Il re di Girgenti – Andrea Camilleri (15/52 books challenge)

z chłopa królDid you know that Agrigento (town in Sicily) had a peasant for a king for a few days? I didn’t, but I found out by reading this book. The author read about this once and decided to create his own vision of how this could have happened. Hence, we have this book.

Zosimo, the Sicily’s king, is an unexpectedly smart and witty peasant. Everyone goes to him for advice, and he searches for answers where others are afraid to look. He’s been famous since he was a toddler, for he began to speak when other children learn to walk. Nobody expects, however, that one day he’ll aspire for kingdom.

Andrea spent 5 years writing this book, and though it happens through at least 50 years and covers a lot of events, deaths and tragedies, it doesn’t lose its tempo, or changes the tone. It’s sort of a “men’s saga”, but women are still important, though albeit in the background.

The book is funny and irreverent, it’s a very well written pastiche. It covers a lot of historical events, but I wouldn’t recommend it as a history source J Overall, though, it’s worth reading – only for some reason, writing a review of it, has been very difficult for me.

PS Polish title for this book is: “Z chłopa król,” which translates into “From peasant to king.” the Italian original title translates into “The king of Grigenti, which was Agrigento used to be called.


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