A Tranquil Star, the first new American collection of Primo Levi's previously untranslated fiction to appear since 1990, affirms his position as one of the 20th century's most enduring writers. These 17 stories, first published in Italian between 1949 and 1986, and translated by Ann Goldstein and Alessandra Bastagli, demonstrate Levi's extraordinary range, taking the reader from the primal resistance of a captured partisan fighter to a middle-aged chemist experimenting with a new paint that wards off evil, to the lustful thoughts of an older man obsessed with a mysterious woman in a seaside villa. In the title story, Levi demonstrates his unerringly tragic understanding of the fragility of the universe through the tale of a pensive astronomer, terrified by the possibility that a long-dormant star might explode and reduce the entire planet to vapor.
This remarkable new collection affirms Italo Calvino's conviction that Levi was one of the most important and gifted writers of our time.
"In Levi's writing, nothing is superfluous and everything is essential." (Saul Bellow)
"After the barbarisms of the last century - which have followed us into this one - reading Levi remains an indispensable way of readapting ourselves to the complexity of being human." (The New York Times)
"Levi has been granted this gift of destiny, and American readers now have the gift of rediscovering it." (The Washington Post)
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