Numbers in the Dark by Italo Calvino - review by Rosemary Stoyle

Rosemary Stoyle

Ingredients Rather Than Cake on Offer

Numbers in the Dark


Jonathan Cape 276pp $14.99 order from our bookshop

Well, how do you read the Literary Review? One review a day? As they come? Picking one anywhere, lured by the title, or the picture, or just the way the pages fall open? Numbers in the Dark is an assorted lot of short and very short texts by Italo Calvino, and it is oddly difficult to know how to set about reading it.

Paradoxically, coming up against the problem of how to read his text, we meet Calvino head-on, since the reader’s relationship with the work was one of the puzzles the author loved to play with. He tosses around the relationship between author and text, between reader and text, between literature and

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