A sweeping historical novel about the struggle of one woman and one village against war, racism and ecological devastation.
In a small village in South Tyrol, Trina longs for a different life. She dedicates herself to becoming a teacher, but the year that she qualifies Mussolini's regime abolishes the use of German as a teaching language.
In this new climate of fear and uncertainty Trina works for a clandestine network of schools in the valley, always with the risk of capture.
Now married and a mother Trina's life is again thrown into uncertainty when Germany anounces the 'Great choice' and communities in South Tyrol are given the opportunity to move to Germany.
The town splits and ever-increasing rifts form among its people. Those, like Trina and her family, who choose not to leave are seen as traitors and spies; they can no longer leave the house without suffering abuse.
Then one day Trina comes home and finds that her daughter is missing...
Head of Zeus, an Apollo book * Historical Fiction
02 Apr 2020 * 224pp * £5.99 * 9781789545104
[An] intimate historical novel... Trina's inner life and the inexorable rising waters bridge the temporal divide of years and generations, offering the reader a painfully relevant metaphor for the ways in which we must live our lives in a world that grows increasingly unstable'
'Balzano employs an unpretentious style to explore Trina's life and wider questions about an individual's relationship to a particular place'
'Focusing on a town that disappeared under water, Balzano wrote a story of not-belonging and temporariness deeply rooted in today's reality'
A novel that gets even better with every chapter, as it happens with talented storytellers'
An epic tale of love, family relationships, war and belonging, this is a beautifully written and atmospheric tale... Balzano's prose is evocative and intense, deftly painting a picture. The story itself is gripping, accompanied by equally compelling snippets of European history'
'Balzano illuminates a war waged upon the South Tyrol even after 'the war' was over. Balzano recites horrors in a cool, unvarnished tone, cataloging a life upended by war and, worse, by its remembrance'
'Through its short chapters and understated prose, I'm Staying Here is an arresting novel about a small but beautiful place in constant turmoil and conflict with itself – turmoil that we discover will continue even past the war years when the town of Curon ended up facing its biggest threat of all'
Marco Balzano lives and works in Milan as a teacher of Literature at high school. I'm Staying Here has been translated into 12 languages. He is considered one of the finest Italian writers of his generation.
A former commissioning editor, Jill Foulston is now a translator of Italian literature. She lives in London and Italy.