The amused layers of cynicism and manipulation will be all too familiar to students of that perennially scandal-strafed society. Also, the open-source invitation to the journalists to write not about what did happen but what could happen, leaves the door wide open for the kind of half-informed speculation that typifies the most viral of modern media narratives.
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After the initial conspiracy is dissected with engineering exactness, a second is mooted with dire consequences. Perhaps the most frightening aspect is simply that it could be true. As fiction, though, Numero Zero suffers from a deadly lack of momentum. Colonna is barely in the door at his new job before the book is hijacked by rounds of story meetings. As ever, the old master linguist is fascinated by words, and how they are deployed. There are characters named Palatino and Braggadocio and countless detours into sidebars.
Numero Zero review – ‘the spirit of Borges hovers over Umberto Eco’s latest novel’
There are times when the book evinces some of the chipper insouciance of a late-period Thomas Pynchon escapade. But a little of this goes a long way, and soon the asides are just draining whatever little narrative tension has been built along the way. The former could seem more outlandish than the latter. Bernard Rose's Candyman offers a moody "elegance", if you will, that's sorely lacking in other horror films of the era.
Doug Clifford and Stu Cook look back on the bright-burning Creedence Clearwater Revival Woodstock set from August , and talk about the decision to get off the road after 25 years as Creedence Clearwater Revival. One of alternative rock's key statements arrived in with Where Have you Been. Though this complex, wheels-within-wheels plotting is classic Eco, "Numero Zero" stands apart from the rest of his oeuvre in a few ways.
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For one, it is relatively short — less than pages. And it lacks much of the rich, colorful writing of his previous novels, instead opting for long stretches of expository dialogue in which characters lecture one another on Italy's complex political history. Much of it comes off as didactic — though perhaps the dialogue has a flow or cadence in the original Italian that isn't captured by Richard Dixon's translation. Colonna strikes up a tentative friendship with one of his colleagues, Romano Braggadocio, a muckraking writer with a penchant for wild theorizing.
Braggadocio treats Colonna to a series of long monologues detailing a grand conspiracy that he is investigating. He claims to have discovered that Mussolini was not killed in , but instead was hidden away by the Allies in case they needed him to reemerge to lead a secret army against Italian communists in the event that they managed to take control of the government.
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Eco bases this on the real-life Operation Gladio, a secret network of NATO-organized paramilitary cells across Europe during the Cold War that were kept in place to serve as potential resistance fighters in case of a communist takeover. View all online retailers Find local retailers. The gripping new conspiracy thriller by the internationally bestselling author of The Name of the Rose The gripping new conspiracy thriller by the bestselling author of The Name of the Rose , Lake Como.
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