Let the Games Begin
Translated from the Italian by Kylee Doust
In Let the Games Begin, internationally best-selling author Niccolò Ammaniti, winner of the prestigious Strega Prize, fuses a riotous dose of anarchic absurdity with a clear-eyed critique of contemporary society caught in a narcissistic spiral of longing and striving.
The novel begins on the night of the most decadent party of the century. A rags-to-riches real estate magnate has planned an over-the-top weekend safari for a who’s-who of celebrities at his sprawling residence in Villa Ada. Starlets, politicians, soccer stars, and intellectuals all turn up to rub elbows. Among them is a neurotically charming author, struggling to write his next literary tome and pining for renewed recognition. In an unexpected turn of events, he crosses paths with the Wilde Beasts of Abaddon, a satanic sect scheming to ruin the evening’s festivities in order to go down in history as a world-famous cult. What was intended as the most spectacular fête of the year quickly descends into apocalyptic chaos. In this satirical tragicomedy, Ammaniti reveals a side of modern culture riddled with superficiality and vulgarity that nourishes our deepest dreams and insecurities.
About the Author
Niccolò Ammaniti was born in Rome in 1966. He has written six novels and two collections of short stories. His first novel, I’ll Steal You Away, was long listed for The Independent Foreign Fiction Prize. He won the prestigious Italian Viareggio Literary Prize for Fiction for his best-selling novel I’m Not Scared, which has been translated into thirty-five languages. As God Commands received the Premio Strega Prize in 2007.