Zeno's Conscience

Recommended by Tim Parks, and 1 others. See all reviews

Ranked #18 in Italian, Ranked #69 in Italysee more rankings.

This enormously engaging, strange novel is both an engrossing saga of a family and a hilarious account of addiction and failure as its helpless hero, notionally undergoing psychiatric help, manages spectacularly to fail to give up smoking, run his business or make sense of his private life.

A hymn to self-delusion and procrastination ZENO'S CONSCIENCE has provoked enormous affection in its readers both in Italian and English since its first publication in the 1920s.

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Tim Parks Let’s make a quick comment about Svevo. Svevo was not his real name. His real name was Schmitz and he grew up as a German speaker in the area of Trieste where there was a big linguistic mix, so Italian was his second language. He had written a number of books which he self-published, which was quite common at that time, and received no attention at all really, so he was a failure in that regard. He worked as a businessman and he was quite successful in a company producing industrial paints for painting ships and things like that, which was a fairly big business in the Trieste area, then part... (Source)

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