Orfeo in Paradise Author:Luigi Santucci Distraught over the recent death of his mother, an orphaned young man named Orfeo leaps into the past from the roof of Milan Cathedral. As he has been promised by the mysterious "Monsieur des Oiseaux," he falls from 1967 into the era just preceding his mother's birth. Then, established in a real past while retaining consciousness of another "p... more »resent," he watches the course of his mother's life evolve from her birth up to the time of her (from his point of view) undesirable marriage to his father. Disregarding the terms of his pact with "Monsieur des Oiseaux," Orfeo courageously and fruitlessly attempts to sacrifice his own opportunity to be born, urging the still-single girl not to marry the man to whom she has become engaged (his future father).
Wonderfully evocative, Orfeo in Paradise is, in essence, a Proustian search for the past -- but with the important difference that Orfeo attempts to reshape the present by direct interference in the events leading up to it. Owing something, perhaps, to time-telescoping devices used by Mark Twain, Henry James, and H. G. Wells, it is nontheless both original in conception and humanly moving in the telling.
Translated from the Italian by Joseph Green.« less