Tsaoussis’ debut novel, the first in a trilogy, is a love story about being true to one’s self.
Mafia kingpin and businessman Carlo Biancone longs for the past and for the family and love that he has lost. However, Carlo is quickly distracted from his deep longing by a secretive visit from a member of the Catholic Church revolving around a priest requesting a book that only Biancone can provide. Yet, in this installment at least, the reader doesn’t find out the book’s purpose. Before that storyline really develops, the narrative shifts to Biancone’s unknown son (from a mistress), Andrea Domani, a fashion designer who benefits from the riches of his father. Despite the two of them never having met, when they eventually do, they form a fantastic relationship in no time. Once Biancone dies in a questionable plane crash, Andrea takes over the family businesses, including a budding fashion empire. A foiled takeover plot targeting Andrea’s empire soon leads to a former secretary killing people in the Amazon. Eventually, Andrea, a hermaphrodite, uses the family fortune to undergo surgery to become a woman. She then opts to leave the fashion business behind and marry her true love. For the most part, characters and their relationships are shallow and poorly developed, with much of the dialogue coming off as flat. Storylines and characters are frequently introduced but never resolved or clearly connected to the primary plot. Perhaps these characters and storylines will be picked up in the coming sequels, but overall, this volume causes confusion. What the story lacks in cohesiveness and depth, though, it makes up for in entertainingly fanciful and mystical turns.
A whirlwind story that leaves the reader dizzy.