THE MIRROR MAKER: Stories and Essays by Primo Levi

THE MIRROR MAKER: Stories and Essays

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A truly mixed bag of newspaper pieces that Levi (The Periodic Table, The Drowned and the Saved) wrote for Turin's La Stampa. Some are no more than op-ed slants (on nuclear war, on the virtues of rhyme in modern poetry); others are Levi in his scientonaturalist mode (fabulist interviews with animals); and some are just responses to eccentric realities that intrigued Levi's truly wide-ranging mind (a piece about gossip, one on translating Kafka, and a couple of pieces that explore imaginatively the sweet idea of alchemy--something that Levi the chemist understood as dream better than most). What comes through most strongly, though--miscellaneous as the trifles are--is Levi's poly-curiosity, as well as what he calls his ""pathological"" memory: things return to Levi with remarkable if sometimes distressing clarity. Slight as these pieces may be, then, they are evidence of great intellectual balance--and thus are very good to have.

Pub Date: Oct. 24th, 1989
ISBN: 0805209891
Publisher: Schocken