Synopses & Reviews
Readers familiar only with the Disney adaptations of Collodis classic will be surprised by this dark masterpiece, a central work in the Italian literary canon.
First published in serial form in 1881 in the Italian periodical Giornale dei Bambini, The Adventures of Pinocchio garnered immediate acclaim as a childrens story. Today Italians consider Pinocchio, along with The Divine Comedy and The Decameron, one of their most important works of literature. Collodi did more than merely weave a captivating tale. Through metaphor and allusion he summed up the national character of Italy and made biting commentary on many of the prominent social concerns of the nineteenth century, among them the despair and hunger of poverty, the importance of an education, and the hypocrisy of the judicial and medical establishments. Indeed, the universality of Collodis themes led Benedetto Croce to remark, “The wood from which Pinocchio is carved is humanity itself.” This vibrant new translation fully renders Collodis subtle and sarcastic wit, reclaiming the book for adult readers. The evocative illustrations by Carmelo Lettere are as delightfully refreshing and timeless as the story itself.
"Thank goodness for Nancy Canepa, who at last gives us a 'Pinocchio' written in graceful and lively English prose." New York Times Book Review
"Canepa's translation, with its sharply comic overtones, reveals the layers of irony in Collodi's work." Newsday
"Fluidly translated from the Italian by Nancy Canepa and sporting stylish line drawings by Carmelo Lettere, this should prove a tasteful alternative to the inevitable tie-in edition....Collodi's witty, satiric tale is much harsher than its Hollywood adaptation, and grownups will appreciate it as much or more than children." Publishers Weekly
Disneys Pinocchio is considered a classic, but it is not a faithful adaptation of the tale. In Carlo Collodis original story, first published in 1881, the cutesy cat Figaro does not exist, Pinocchio attacks the Talking Cricket (not named Jiminy) with a hammer, and the puppet-boy is hanged by assassins midway through the book. Inspired by the commedia dellarte, Collodis Pinocchio is both a lively adventure tale for children and a very adult social critique. It attacks poverty and the hypocrisy of the medical and judicial establishments while emphasizing the importance of education. In this faithful newly translated and illustrated version, Collodis vision, praised by Italian critics as on par with that of Dante and Boccaccio, is preserved to appeal to readers of all ages.
A newly translated and illustrated version of the original story published in 1881 includes a plot and characters quite different from the Disney adaptation, offering a social critique of poverty, government, and education.