Curzio Malaparte (pseudonym of Kurt Eric Suckert, 1898–1957) was born in Prato, Italy, and served in World War I. An early supporter of the Italian Fascist movement and a prolific journalist, Malaparte soon established himself as an outspoken public figure. In 1931 he incurred Mussolini’s displeasure by publishing a how-to manual entitled Technique of the Coup-d’Etat, which led to his arrest and a brief term in prison. During World War II Malaparte worked as a correspondent, for much of the time on the eastern front, and this experience provided the basis for his two most famous books, Kaputt (1944; available as an NYRB classic) and The Skin (1949). His political sympathies veered to the left after the war. He continued to write, while also involving himself in the theater and the cinema.
This sequel of sorts to Malaparte’s disconcerting and beguiling Kaputt shares its predecessor’s uncanny vision of a world at war. Here Malaparte accompanies the American forces as they liberate Naples, Rome, Florence, and Milan. But as Malaparte shows, liberation brings with it its own set of horrors. “A skilled guide to the lowest depths of Europe’s inferno.”—TLS
Reveals the horrors of war from within the heart of corruption.