Synopses & Reviews
"Plans for an ATM heist go terribly wrong for a bumbling gang of Italian ruffians in Ammaniti's latest. Rino Zena, an unemployed single father with neo-Nazi tendencies, can barely keep his teenage son, Cristiano, out of social services. Zeno's friend Danilo Aprea hopes to buy a lingerie shop in order to woo back his wife after the death of their daughter. Their plan, to boost an ATM, hinges on the car-thieving skills of Corrado Rumitz, nicknamed Quattro Formaggi, a not-quite-right misfit obsessed with a porn star named Ramona. After watching Dog Day Afternoon, Rino takes the movie as a sign from God not to go forward with the plan, but word fails to get to Danilo or to Quattro Formaggi, who, on his way to meet up, is distracted by a teenager he thinks is Ramona. When a massive rain storm hits, the series of tragic coincidences quickly turns deadly. Ammaniti, a wonder at creating graphic black comedy, keeps the plot rolling while pushing his characters to their absolute limits, even if the last act is a bit messy. If the Coen brothers ever wanted to go Italian, this'd be prime adaptation material." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
From the internationally best-selling author of Im Not Scared comes a dizzying and compulsively readable novel set in a moribund town in industrial Italy, where a father and son contend with a hostile world and their own inner demons. The economically depressed village of Varrano, where Cristiano Zena lives with his hard-drinking, out-of-work father, Rino, is a world away from the picturesque towns of travel-brochure Italy. When Rino and his rough-edged cronies Danilo and Quattro Formaggi come up with a plan to reverse all their fortunes, Cristiano wonders if maybe their lives are poised for deliverance after all. But the plan goes horribly awry. On a night of apocalyptic weather, each character will act in a way that will have irreversible consequences for themselves and others, and Cristiano will find his life changed forever, and not in the way he had hoped. Gritty and relentless, As God Commands moves at breakneck speed, blending brutal violence, dark humor, and surprising tenderness. With clear-eyed affection, Niccolò Ammaniti introduces a cast of unforgettable characters trapped at the crossroads of hope and despair.
About the Author
Niccolò Ammaniti was born in Rome in 1966. He has written three novels and a collection of short stories. He won the prestigious Italian Viareggio-Repaci Prize for Fiction with his bestselling novel Im Not Scared, which has been translated into thirty-five languages and became a prize-winning film. His next novel, I'll Steal You Away, was longlisted for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, and The Crossroads received the Premio Strega Prize, Italys equivalent of the Booker, in 2007.