The Road to the City

The Road to the City

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Author: Natalia Ginzburg

Translator: Frances Frenaye

Publisher: Daunt Books

Paperback

Delia is one of five children, growing up in a poor Italian village. She is 17, and dreams of marrying a rich man, living in a grand apartment in the city and wearing silk stockings. To escape her father’s neglect and her mother’s sadness, she begins to take the dusty road to the city every day, accompanied by Nini,her sweet and mysterious cousin.

When Nini takes a job in a factory and moves in with a city woman, Delia sees another way of being. But when she discovers she’s pregnant, she agrees to marry the father, seduced by the promise of wealth and comfort.

Nothing, not even Nini’s desperate declaration of love, can stop her – but her rejection will be his undoing. The Road to the City is a short, poignant novel about the dreams of youth, and the cruelty it takes to make them come true.

‘One of the great Italian writers of the 20th Century…[her] books snare so much of what is odd and lovely and fleeting in the world.’ – Parul Sehgal, New York Times