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Kaputt- Curzio Malaparte


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Anybody read this curious piece of WWII German/Itlaian reportage? Many, many memorable scenes but a nice touch was what the average German soldier called Barbarossa -- 1000 jahr blitzkrieg.

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I read it years ago, and found it fascinating.

IIRC (and this will be a test of my memory, as I'm not looking it up), Malaparte was an Italian journalist who enjoyed the company of aristocrats and other well-connected Italians, many of whom would come to be part of or adjacent to the Mussolini regime. He was also deeply cynical about the war. The novel is semi-autobiographical and offers a very unusual perspective on WW2.

Did I remember it right?

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Posted (edited)

You remembered right! His real name was Kurt Erich Suckert and Malparte was a play on Bonaparte. He was a friend and was also imprisoned (island exile - how Roman!) of/by Mussolini. One of the very strange scenes (there are so many) was summer salmon fishing with Himmler above the Arctic circle in Finland.

I should also add he wrote about the American occupation of Naples in The Skin. Not quite as compelling a book but of interest certainly.

Edited by KGBoy
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