The Leopard is the top selling Italian novel of all time. It is also considered one of the most important works of Italian literature and perhaps even all literature. It can be somewhat daunting to pick up a book with such accolades but I loved it from the beginning.
The Leopard is largely set in the summer of 1860 during the invasion of Sicily by Garibaldi’s army and Risorgimento (the unification of Italy). The story of an aristocratic family facing the social and political change of the time. But is so much more than this.
It is the essence of what it means to be Sicilian. It is about privilege and desire for change. At its heart is a charming and sensual, powerful yet thoughtful man, our protagonist Don Fabrizo the Prince of Salina and “the last leopard”. A truly memorable character. (I may have fallen a little bit in love with him myself).
The Leopard is beautifully written with a sense of irony and melancholy. It is an evocative and sumptuous book.
“If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change.”
The Leopard: A Novel
Book #14 of 2019
MY RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
GENRE: Classic literature
“Love. Of course, love. Flames for a year, ashes for thirty.”