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Love in Vain

by Federigo Tozzi

The simplicity of language is deceptive in these short stories, written in the early 20th century. They conjure up a world of different values, although the themes of love and loss are timeless enough. I had to persevere with Tozzi's spare, minimalist style, and some stories end so abruptly that I felt as if something was missing.

Extract

And then the daughter of a railway worker's widow let it be known to him, through another woman he'd been friendly with since childhood, that she intended to woo him. This flattered his ego, but he rejected her offer. The girl was rather homely. "If I'm going to take a wife, I want her the way I want her!" And he waited, waited in desperation.
Translated by Minna Proctor

Parallels

The Water of the Hills by Marcel Pagnol
 

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