Valentino is the spoiled child of doting parents who have no doubt he will be ‘a man of consequence’. His sisters, however, see him for what he truly is: lazy, apathetic, self-absorbed and far more interested in partying than applying himself to his studies at medical school. His parents’ dreams begin to unravel when, out of the blue, Valentino becomes engaged to the wealthy yet strikingly ugly Maddalena. The family is scandalised by his choice of bride – and suspicious of his motives.
InValentino, class, social expectations, wealth and marriage come under Natalia Ginzburg’s forensic scrutiny, her unflinching moral realism and her keen psychological insight resulting in a work of quiet devastation.