Italian seaside resorts are perhaps not so different from towns like Blackpool or Skegness, except for more reliable sunshine. Set in his home town of Forte dei Marmi on the Tuscan coast, Fabio Genovesi’s Strega Prize-winning novel strips away the veneer and follows his cast of misfits as they struggle with low paid and sporadic employment, unaffordable housing, dashed aspirations, seedy nightlife and small-mindedness. It all sounds a bit depressing, but this is one of the funniest books I’ve read, and even though it has at its heart the story of an unconventional family dealing with unexpected loss, I guarantee it will also make you laugh a lot. Poignant yet hilarious.
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