The End, by Salvatore Scibona

The End is a thick, textured and poetic novel featuring a connected group of Italian immigrants in the mid to early 20th century. The writing is beautiful, mysterious and dreamlike. However Scibona leaves the writing too cerebral and obfuscating (vocab word for you!) throughout the first segment of the book. The reader feels isolated, looked down on and utterly unwelcome in the story. After the first third of the book the poetry remains but the details behind it become clearer, but by this point the reader doesn’t particularly care. If Scibona had been slightly more welcoming to readers from the beginning, this would have been a good book. As is, by the time you reach a part you are allowed to enter and feel surrounded by the lovely writing it is just too late to now be connected to characters or what has happened or to put the effort into unraveling the now-potentially-understandable details of the novel.