Books: The Sins Of The Old World

From Toronto's Nino Ricci, a haunting tale of primal ties and guilt

If Toronto has become one of the world's literary capitals, that is in large part because so many of its contemporary writers have imported the rites and superstitions of their Old Worlds into the wide-open promise of the New--Rohinton Mistry re-creating Bombay of the 1970s in his heartrending A Fine Balance, Anne Michaels piecing together fragments from the Holocaust in her luminous Fugitive Pieces, Michael Ondaatje staging a dance of cosmopolitans in The English Patient. Nino Ricci belongs very much in their company, Italian division. Though his protagonists live in clean, secular Toronto, they carry around the primal ties and cycles...

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