Good Master, what shall I do that I may receive life everlasting? And Jesus said to him: Why callest thou me good? None is good but one, that is God. (Mark 10:17–18)
When the apparently mild-mannered retired teacher Domenico Stasi learns that a former student of his is being held as a suspected terrorist he seeks her out to assure himself of her innocence, to convince himself that his teachings have not contributed to the creation of a monster. But she proudly declares her guilt. What’s more, she entrusts him with a task that initially seems a child’s game but soon becomes much more serious. Now someone is watching Domenico Stasi. And the mysterious “contact” to whom his former student directed him has a gun for Stasi and instructions to kill a man. A deadly game has been put into play—nothing can stop its course. But is everything what it appears to be? Who is Domenico Stasi: killer, victim, or hapless fall guy? The writer himself is the demiurge of this story, but perhaps he too is implicated in the imminent crime. Only one thing is certain: no one here is innocent.
Domenico Starnone was born in Naples in 1943 and now lives in Rome. He is the author of eight novels, and numerous books of non-fiction. In 2001, he was the recipient of Italy’s most prestigious literary prize, the Strega.