Strange game in the house of lights and fear. The new book by Donato Carrisi

The ability to play is always central to his work. He bounces to the end in the pages of his books translated all over the world. As it happens in the movies that he, Donato Carrisi, signature. Because, with those who immerse themselves in reading his stories, as well as with the spectator annihilated in the cinema in the dark in front of the big screen that oozes pathos and fear, he practically plays with it. And the art of playing is never a coincidence. It is a precise choice, an invigorating ingredient in the construction of a story about him. Gambling is a very serious matter. The rules and the interlocking. Chance and fortune. The game is also, always, a matter of life and death. Who has seen in recent days at the cinema “I am the abyss” he ascertained the shiver on his skin, the tenacious insistence on destabilizing the viewer, making him tremble in his chair. The man who collects the garbage, one of the protagonists, plays an open game with whoever throws the main truths of his life into the garbage. The keys to the most sincere storytelling of the experience of each of us are in the waste bins. But then there are cases in life that make you encounter an “unforeseen” that changes the rules of the game. Here, at that point, in front of the little girl with the purple tuft, the banker’s game can skip… But it’s only the beginning.

The new novel, “The House of Lights”

Anyone who is opening Carrisi’s new novel these days, which arrived at the bookstore a week ago with his latest book (at the top of the best-selling charts), is already at the beginning of a new game. “The house of lights” opens with the rules to follow to enter a sort of game between writer and reader, which opens in front of the pages. It is the handbook of the Game of the wax men, or the Game of candles, or the Game of you were there (and you’re gone): “the little wax man chases the living; whoever is touched becomes a little man of wax and chases the living; the wax men are forbidden to speak, they can only whistle…”.

It is during a wax children’s game, a sort of hide and seek, that the little one disappears Zeno Zanussi, said Batigol. It happened 25 years earlier, it’s little Pietro, the friend who watched the game unfold without being able to participate in that moment, because his leg was momentarily out of the game, he was shocked by that event. The reader will soon find out what it is Pietro Gerber, the psychologist already appeared in other stories by the same author. Carrisi’s readers got to know him in two previous novels: “The House of Voices” of 2019 and “The house without memories” in 2021. Back on stage this time to meet Eva. She is a ten-year-old agoraphobic girl, she never wants to go out: she lives alone, without parents, in a house on top of a hill, with an au pair maya. It will be the latter to look for Gerber, known as “the baby sleeper”. She contacts him because Eva is too conditioned by her imaginary “friend”, he torments her and ultimately decides her life. Gerber takes the case, albeit with some resistance, his career is in decline, but Eva is really in trouble. But inside something always pushes him to help the children.

«Gerber would like to help you – explains the writer – and convince this inner friend to leave her alone. To do that, you have to put this little girl under hypnosis therapy.’ If this can already make the thrill of the incoming thrill feel in the air, what happens gradually in the story will become alarming. It’s a new game that suddenly pops up between Eva and Gerber. During the hypnosis Gerber will contact the deep part of Eve which should have produced the imaginary friend. A voice emerges that is not at all unknown to him, sounds that seem to come back from a distant time… «That’s where they happen very strange things – explains Carrisi again – the imaginary friend begins to relate things that Eva could never know, nobody knows them. In fact, these are stories from Gerber’s past.” And then: how does Eva know them? How does Eva’s imaginary friend know so well a story far from her? The author is also always very good in another game: in saying and not saying, in opening and closing windows on the truth. The story seems to veer towards the supernatural, but in these books (as in the movies) nothing is ever predictable. Who will read, will know.

“My characters are all tormented”

There certainly is an inner nagging in souls that inhabit these narratives, there is always something unsolved that the writer knows well, from criminologist before as a scholar, as a fan of the genre even before as a writer translated into 30 languages ​​​​in the world. And she knows the power of hypnosis from having tried it on him before making it an ingredient in his novels. He told how easy it is for those who are hypnotized to completely lose control over what is happening around them, but at the same time how much control over themselves is more amplified. And then: «My characters are all quite tormented, they all have something to be forgiven. And Pietro Gerber in particular, fights with the ghosts of the past who always find a way to haunt his present », explains Carrisi.

And there is a story “also” for children

That’s not all yet. It’s also out November 29th.”Eva and the empty chair”, a “dark tale” always written by the writer of Martina Franca. IS a story for children too linked to the story of Eva herself from “La casa delle luci” and dedicated by Carrisi to her children. With illustrations by Paul D’Altan, the narrative investigates the loneliness of the little girl in the big dark house on top of the hill who would like someone to play with.

Strange game in the house of lights and fear. The new book by Donato Carrisi