Download After Hannibal by Barry Unsworth PDF

By Barry Unsworth

Barry Unsworth, the Booker Prize-winning writer of Sacred Hunger and the bestselling Morality Play, returns in most sensible shape with this worldly, bittersweet comedy of manners and morals set in a single of Italy's so much glorious--and traditionally treacherous--regions.

Golden Umbria is domestic to breathtaking surroundings and nice paintings; it's also the place Hannibal and his invading band of Carthaginians ambushed and slaughtered a Roman legion, and the place the neighborhood place-names nonetheless converse of that bloodshed.

Unsworth's modern invaders comprise the vegetables, a retired American couple looking serenity one of the Umbrian hills, who're bilked out in their reductions by way of the corrupt English "building expert" Stan Blemish; the Chapmans, a British estate speculator and his spouse, whose dispute with their pals over a wall escalates right into a feud of approximately medieval proportions; Anders Ritter, a German haunted by means of the half his father performed in a mass killing of Italian hostages in Rome in the course of the moment international battle; and Fabio and Arturo, a homosexual couple who, looking for peace and self-sufficiency, locate treachery as an alternative. And on the heart of these types of webs of deceit and greed is the crafty legal professional Mancini, satisfied to assist the disputants--and to take advantage of to the fullest the religion that those "innocents abroad" have positioned in him.  

Mining his genius for old narrative in addition to his present for sharp-eyed portraiture and deliciously droll storytelling, Barry Unsworth has written a wonderful entertainment.  After Hannibal is one among this striking author's best creations.

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Detective Fenerman called my parents. They had found a schoolbook, they believed, that might have been given to me that last day. “But it could be anyone’s,” my father said to my mother as they began another restless vigil. ” Evidence was mounting, but they refused to believe. Two days later, on December twelfth, the police found my notes from Mr. Botte’s class. Animals had carried off the notebook from its original burial site—the dirt did not match the surrounding samples, but the graph paper, with its scribbled theories that I could never understand but still dutifully recorded, had been found when a cat knocked down a crow’s nest.

Harvey made me lie still underneath him and listen to the beating of his heart and the beating of mine. How mine skipped like a rabbit, and how his thudded, a hammer against cloth. We lay there with our bodies touching, and, as I shook, a powerful knowledge took hold. He had done this thing to me and I had lived. That was all. I was still breathing. I heard his heart. I smelled his breath. The dark earth surrounding us smelled like what it was, moist dirt where worms and animals lived their daily lives.

How mine skipped like a rabbit, and how his thudded, a hammer against cloth. We lay there with our bodies touching, and, as I shook, a powerful knowledge took hold. He had done this thing to me and I had lived. That was all. I was still breathing. I heard his heart. I smelled his breath. The dark earth surrounding us smelled like what it was, moist dirt where worms and animals lived their daily lives. I could have yelled for hours. I knew he was going to kill me. I did not realize then that I was an animal already dying.

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