The immigrant tenants of a building in Rome offer skewed accounts of a murder in this prize-winning satire by the Algerian-born Italian author (Publishers Weekly).
Piazza Vittorio is home to a polyglot community of immigrants who have come to Rome from all over the world. But when a tenant is murdered in the building’s elevator, the delicate balance is thrown into disarray. As each of the victim’s neighbors is questioned by the police, readers are offered an all-access pass into the most colorful neighborhood in contemporary Rome.
With language as colorful as the neighborhood it describes, each character takes his or her turn “giving evidence.” Their various stories reveal much about the drama of racial identity and the anxieties of a life spent on society’s margins, but also bring to life the hilarious imbroglios of this melting pot Italian culture.
“Their frequently wild testimony teases out intriguing psychological and social insight alongside a playful whodunit plot.”—Publishers Weekly
Amara Lakhous was born in Algiers in 1970. He has a degree in philosophy from the University of Algiers and another in cultural anthropology from the University la Sapienza, Rome. He recently completed a Ph.D. thesis entitled “Living Islam as a Minority.” His first novel, Le cimici e il pirata (Bedbugs and the Pirate), was published in 1999. Clash of Civilizations Over an Elevator in Piazza Vittorio, winner of Italy’s prestigious Flaiano prize, is his second novel. He currently resides in New York.