If on a Winter's Night a Traveller by Italo Calvino

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Calvino's anti-novel is about the efforts of his two characters — a man called only The Reader, and the Other Reader, a woman named Ludmilla — to read ten very different novels. They are never able to get to the second chapter of any of them; nor are the actual readers of this novel, who share their puzzlement and frustration — as well as their delight in the situation. Finally, the two marry and settle down to read in bed — a novel called If on a Winter's Night a Traveler by Italo Calvino. Among other things, Calvino insists that novels cannot be a form of "escape" from the world, because reading and life are inseparable. The text provides an examination of the different ways of reading and of the expectations of different kinds of readers; it is also an exploration of the relationship between the writer and the reader.

- Publisher

The 153rd greatest fiction book of all time


This book is on the following lists:

  1. - 13th on El Pais Favorite Books of 100 Spanish Authors (El Pais)
  2. - 22nd on Harvard Book Store Staff's Favorite 100 Books (Harvard Book Store)
  3. - 38th on 50 Books to Read Before You Die (Complex)
  4. - 69th on The Telegraph’s 100 Novels Everyone Should Read (Telegraph)
  5. - 72nd on 100 Best Books (Montana State University)
  6. - 82nd on The 100 Greatest Novels of All Time: The List (The Observer)
  7. - 96th on Entertainment Weekly's Top 100 Novels (Entertainment Weekly)
  8. - From Zero to Well-Read in 100 Books (Jeff O'Neal at Bookriot.com)
  9. - The Bigger Read List (English PEN)

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