Primo Levi

 

A Tranquil Star

 

Seventeen short ‘unpublished’ stories, collected and translated from various magazines and other sources. Levi enjoys the classic ‘what if’ SF convention for several of these stories, taking an idea and playing with it. Some ideas are stronger than others. There are a couple that are more autobiographical. Some political. Some just surreal (I don’t know many other people that would take the time to develop the idea of ‘what if you plonked a kangaroo in a dinner party’ – but he gets away with it), but all are presented in his thoroughly engaging style. I don’t know what it is, his voice is so understated, but I just enjoy reading Levi.

 

The standout for me was the title story, moving beyond musing to deftly make a profound observation about the relationship between our personal worlds and … well … other worlds.

 

June 2011