I am going to write this review in English even though the book I am talking about is not available in English. Yet. I honestly hope, that this will change soon! It would be such a shame if the rest of the world would not be able to enjoy this wonderful piece of literature! The title of the book in its original version is “Il grande scomunicato” by Luca Di Fulvio who is Italian. For all Germans among you, the title is “Der Junge der Träume schenkte” (in English: The boy who gives dreams).
Goodreads Summary (in German): New York, 1909. Aus einem transatlantischen Frachter steigt eine junge Frau mit ihrem Sohn Natale. Sie kommen aus dem tiefsten Süden Italiens – mit dem Traum von einem besseren Leben in Amerika. Doch in der von Armut, Elend und Kriminalität gezeichneten Lower East Side gelten die gnadenlosen Gesetze der Gangs. Nur wer über ausreichend Robustheit und Durchsetzungskraft verfügt, kann sich hier behaupten. So wie der junge Natale, dem überdies ein besonderes Charisma zu eigen ist, mit dem er die Menschen zu verzaubern vermag …
My Thoughts: This book, once again, has been a recommendation by a friend of mine. As I am driving to and from work 45 minutes one way every day, I decided to get the audio book instead of reading a hard copy. It is just the perfect way to kill time during a long drive! My way to work turned out to be extremely short. When I arrived, I was so into the story that I felt like being part of it. A really strange feeling…
The story takes place in New York in the beginning of the 20th century and it is about a boy who grows up in the slums of New York at that time. It is amazing to see him grow up over a period of time of around 30 years. The reader is taking part in his adventures and gets to know all the people he meets in an intensive and extremely detailed way.
Early during the story, he meets a girl through some cruel co incidents and falls in love with her the moment he saw her for the first time. Luca Di Fulvio explains both of these main characters and their feelings and switches back and forth between the two of them. He throws in many loose ends that all tie up in the full story at the very end. All parts of the story play an important role and influence each other.
Luca’s style of writing is amazingly beautiful. He pays so much attention to detail and every word seems to be selected with a lot of thoughts! While I was listening to the story, my thoughts never went away from what was happening! I absorbed EVERY SINGLE WORD with so much pleasure that I never wanted the story to end but at the same time I was longing for the end because I desperately wanted to know if Christmas and Ruth (the two main characters) will finally find each other and be happy together. I am not going to tell you how the story ends because I do not want to kill the tension for you!
Just telling you that once in a while, the story gets really emotional as well as cruel and exciting! It is a great mixture of love story, crime and historical fiction! Totally worth reading, not only for women! I can’t wait to read another story of this highly talented author!!! Please go on writing! The boy that you are describing really is a boy who gives dreams and who makes you dream while reading!
My Rating: ★★★★