A newspaper committed to blackmailandmud slinging, rather than reporting the news. Read more...
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A newspaper committed to blackmailandmud slinging, rather than reporting the news.
A paranoid editor, walking through the streets of Milan, reconstructing fifty years of history against the backdrop of a plot involving the cadaver of Mussolini's double.
The murder of Pope John Paul I, the CIA, red terrorists handled by secret services, twenty years of bloodshed, andevents that seem outlandish until the BBC proves them true.
A fragile love story between two born losers, a failed ghost writer, and a vulnerable girl, who specializes in celebrity gossip yet cries over the second movement of Beethoven s Seventh. And then a dead body that suddenly appears in a back alley in Milan.
Setin 1992 and foreshadowingthe mysteries and follies of the following twenty years, Numero Zerois ascintillating take on our times from the best-selling author ofThe Name of the RoseandFoucault's Pendulum."
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-08-10
- Reviewer: Staff
At the heart of Eco’s short, satiric novel beats a rant against contemporary journalism and the suspicion-rich, fact-poor culture it nurtures. In 1992, Colonna—a 50ish university dropout who ekes out a living as a hack journalist/manuscript reviewer/proofreader/fact-checker—is hired by Milan editor Simei to help produce sample issues of a proposed (mock) newspaper underwritten by an ambitious hotel and nursing home magnate for his private use. Colonna’s new job includes ghostwriting Simei’s book about the newspaper experiment, for his own purposes. At editorial meetings, the newspaper’s six reporters are taught such journalistic techniques as dumbing down, grouping stories to suggest worrisome themes, responding to complaints by casting aspersions on the complainer, quoting sources real and imaginary, and slanting news while maintaining an objective posture. As the newspaper takes shape, Colonna becomes romantically involved with Maia, the horoscope writer, and befriends Bragadaccio. Formerly a magazine freelancer for What They Don’t Tell Us, Bragadaccio is obsessed with the idea that Mussolini is alive, well, and living in Argentina, with the coverup connecting the CIA, a right-wing/Catholic conspiracy, and sundry government scandals. For Eco (The Prague Cemetery), 20th-century history is a mud river beneath Italian society, creating sinkholes for truth and principle. Historical fiction still inspires his best writing, but while romance and humor have never been his forte, they are both credible here. Unfortunately, the promise of a psychological/political thriller remains unfulfilled. As fact and fiction merge into mystery, Eco offers fewer clues than in his masterwork, The Name of the Rose, but no William of Baskerville to solve the puzzle. (Nov.)