“Of course I loved books more than people.”[1]

I have to admit it; I made the typical mistake that I always recommend you not to do: I chose the book from the cover! But you have to understand me: a book with books on it! How could I resist? I.
The well-known bookaholic????

Shelves are full of books with covers of the kind, badly written, but I was lucky because in this used book market I found this really not bad volume.
Ok first of all let’s prepare a nice Naked Cake with the Caramello Salato’s recipe, let’s settle on the rocking chair in the patio (in the absence of which you can run around the city / town until you find one, … or you can look for a play area and equipped with antihistamines, mosquito repellent and Walkman … or for the more contemporary an ipod, or build one yourself! it is necessary that you swing to read this novel!) with a picnic basket in which, in addition to the cake, there will be a ginger drink (discovered by my mother who is crazy about it).

As I said, the undulatory movement of reading is vital – well, if you suffer from seasickness, I recognise it is not the best way … – because we immerse ourselves in various reading plans and a too still position could be counterproductive.

No, the bed is not good, lazy you!

And not even the toilet, which is normally a great place to read in peace, but not for this story.

Here you need the colors and sounds of the Spring as a background and the dessert at hand (the one free from the book).



“There is something about words. In expert hands, manipulated deftly, they take you prisoner. Wind themselves around your limbs like spider silk, and when you are so enthralled you cannot move, they pierce your skin, enter your blood, numb your thoughts. Inside you they work their magic.”[2]

Two women, Vida and Margareth, a story, precisely the thirteenth, which brings them together and puts them against each other, one next to the other. How can I describe this novel in one word? Magnetic. Without understanding why, you find yourself drawn to the folds of history. The words, written in a “Bronte” style have the power to nail you to the pages, they are so stimulating that they seem like those of a spell.



“You are at liberty to say nothing, if that is what you want. But silence is not a natural environment for stories. They need words. Without them they grown pale, sicken and die. And then they haunt you.”[3]


As I read it, it seemed to me that every song was lined with the dust of time, as if it were a story that could be set in any age. The title is evocative, “The thirteenth Tale”, will there be other twelve? I wondered, and even Meg wonders, while listening to Vida and her only unpublished story, the thirteenth, the most dangerous.

It is not a secret that in Anglo-Saxon culture, 13 is an unlucky number, and in fact it is often associated with disastrous events. So, I was really interested in reading this thirteenth in particular.
So much pathos, and a measured introspection, are the basis of this feminine novel, but absolutely recommended to the Y chromosome transporters, too. The settings are classic: the moorland, the dusty antique bookcase; the language is fluid and the fraternal and filial love becomes the undoubted protagonist making us dance through intrigues, mysteries and twists.


“Families are webs. Impossible to touch one part of it without setting the rest vibrating.”[4]



What really struck me and left me a good memory is the homage that the author, Diane Setterfield, makes to books, as an embodiment of man’s immortality.
I don’t think this novel will remain eternal, but I’d like it to try. Because the story of the two women is intriguing, full. The chapters are short, like the sudden rains and the unexpected heat, so even though the book is set in November, it always made me think of March, with its undefined weather, the first good days, the little birds returning to sing and the desolate lands full of love promises of the great classics. I still think that buying a book by choosing the cover is a big mistake, but in this case, I must say that I was not disappointed at all!




[1] From the novel.
[2] From the novel.
[3] From the novel.
[4] From the novel.