The “lowercase letters” hide… the solution: Cosenza welcomes the latest book by Claudio Dionesalvi


By John

Letters from the war era, never delivered to the recipients. Or maybe not: a pile of letters written by Italian soldiers crammed into a collector's drawer. Or, again, what? A bunch of papers written with great circumspection – woe to write something that, in the midst of the Second World War, could offend the “sensitivity” of the fascist regime or, worse, reveal its strategies – and addressed to a spouse, a family member, a friend . Whatever it is, that material represents the only incentive for 'Accio', protagonist of the novel “Miniscule Letters” written by the teacher and author, Claudio Dionesalvi. 'Accio' (diminutive of clown), in fact, is the protagonist of the story, and he comes across these 'written finds' dating back to the Second World War at the very moment in which he is experiencing his – war – with the world: he is a veteran from a very serious loss, and that almost casual 'encounter' will give him back the courage to react and appear for the state exams with extra motivation. Also part of the world of 'Accio' is… the author, the protagonist's teacher. A sort of omniscient narrator who appears at the beginning of the novel and then in the final part.
The letters – we were saying – co-protagonists in all respects of the story, but no less than Ariella, the special “friend” of the student about to graduate. Or of Lorena, an elderly teacher at the school she was, but no less in step with the times (and with technology) than an 18 year old boy. She will be the one to open the “war front” in “Accio's” mind, telling him how love – in those days – traveled at a different pace but no less intense; talking to him about herself, but also about the legendary Mugnune, the tireless postman who defied the winds of war and the bombs to complete his duty and, probably, also out of love for her Maria. Yes, but why had those letters, crammed in the drawer, never arrived? The solution will come at the end, despite the protagonist of the novel having it constantly before his eyes.