Un terremoto a Borgo Propizio (An earthquake at Borgo Propizio) is the third book of the saga Borgo Propizio written by Loredana Limone and published by Salani Editore.
The novel is set in an imaginary village in Tuscany and tells the story of its inhabitants and their daily lives that enclose joys and sorrows, which have nothing to envy to great tragedies, though appearing monotonous at the very first glance.
And the tragedy actually hits Borgo Propizio: an earthquake – preannounced in the title – which is capable of shaking houses, and the overwhelming discovery of the murder of one of its citizens. At the same time, the lives of the protagonists are turned upside down as much as their village, as it usually happens in life: love, betrayal, hopes and relationships frame and intertwine the two main events without ever being superfluous.
The reader empathizes with the Borgo Propizio citizens, lives their emotions, struggles with the mayor who doesn’t want the village to become another Italian tent city and at the same time investigates with the marshal Saltalamacchia to incriminate an elusive criminal.
Loredana Limone’s ability in engaging her readers is revealed in her exceptionally accurate style, in a controlled language that discloses a subtle irony. Moreover, the affection and the indulgence you can feel toward some rather foolish relatives who you cannot help yourself from loving. The author uses a gentle, flowing pen, with quizzical tones, here and there, and shows a great deal of mastery in the character’s portrayal. Even without reading the previous titles, we are acquainted by a few accurate brushstrokes with the stormy love story between Francesco and Belinda, we grasp the good will and frustration of the mayor Felice struggling between personal and public life, and we understand the inner turmoil between the librarian Ingrid and the lawyer Caesar.
An earthquake at Borgo Propizio is one of those novels to be kept on the bedside table, as it encloses delicate stories we can always read with pleasure and whose necessity we are never aware until we get to the last page.
Translation by Alice Corrò and Anna Anzani (edited by Francesca Ceccarelli)