Paris in the 1920s - dizzy and decadent. Where a young man can make a fortune with his wits ... unless he is led into temptation. Cocaine's dandified hero Tito Arnaudi invents lurid scandals and gruesome deaths, and sells these stories to the newspapers. But his own life becomes even more outrageous than his press reports when he acquires three demanding mistresses. Elegant, witty and wicked, Pitigrilli's classic novel was first published in Italian in 1921 and charts the comedy and tragedy of a young man's downfall and the lure of a bygone era. The novel's descriptions of sex and drug use prompted church authorities to place it on a list of forbidden books, while appealing to filmmaker Rainer Werner Fassbinder who wrote a script based on the tale. Cocaine retains its venom even today.
Pitigrilli was the pseudonym of Dino Segre, born in Turin in 1893 to a well-to-do Jewish father and a Catholic mother. He worked as a foreign correspondent in Paris during the 1920s, and under his pen name became equally celebrated and notorious for a series of audacious and subversive books that were translated into sixteen languages. Pitigrilli was accused of serving as an informant to the fascist authorities under Mussolini, who defended the writer against charges of perversity, saying: "Pitigrilli is right ... he photographs the times. If society is corrupt it's not his fault." Pitigrilli fled Italy after the German occupation, living in Switzerland and Argentina, but returned to Turin and converted to fascism before his death in 1975.Review:
"Cocaine is a brilliant black comedy that belongs on the same shelf as Evelyn Waugh's Vile Bodies and Dawn Powell's The Wicked Pavilion." - Jay McInerney, author of Bright Lights, Big City and Brightness Falls
"Pitigrilli was an enjoyable writer - spicy and rapid - like lightning." - Umberto Eco
"Pitigrilli ... deserves rehabilitation. His bleak and brilliant satire, lush and intoxicating prose, and sadistic playfulness remain as fresh and caustic as they were nine decades ago." - The Arts Fuse
"The name of the author Pitigrilli ... is so well known in Italy as to be almost a byword for 'naughtiness' ... The only wonder to us is that some enterprising translator did not render some of his books available in English sooner." - The New York Times
"Seriously wicked ... It deals playfully and brutally with provocative issues of promiscuity, prostitution and ecstasy, and remains at its heart filled with pure, romantic longing." - Die Zeit
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Descrizione libro And/or Pr, 1974. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria 915904039