General Fiction

Il cielo d'erba

(The Grass Sky)

Casa Editrice Longanesi&C., April 2023, pp.552

English sample available

Francesco and Viola have found each other and got married. Only their idyll does not last long. Their relationship is built on fears, worries, escapes and reunions until they have a very violent quarrel during which the underlying reason for Viola’s constant unhappiness emerges: she feels she is a man and has decided to embark on a gender transition process.

The crucial question is: can love, true love, withstand everything?

Francesco and Viola realise they love each other, and never mind the uncertainty of their lives as young adults without a clear future, on the edges of a city. Confident that they share a powerful, intense love, they move in together, then get married… But their idyll does not last long because Francesco notices that Viola is tormented by something that is eating away at her from the inside. An unspeakable secret, maybe another man? There is, indeed, another man: it’s Viola herself. Viola, who has never felt comfortable in that body, with that identity. Thanks to Francesco, she decides to listen to her own voice and start the process of gender transition. The love she has for Francesco is unquestionable and he, guided by an unshakeable feeling, decides to support his wife. But is this really a journey that can be undertaken by two people? Can love, true love, really withstand anything?

A fresh and at the same time mature debut novel that tackles skillfully very topical issues, such as identity and gender transition, with delicacy and authenticity.

Casa Editrice Longanesi&C., April 2023, pp.552

  • Il cielo d’erba is a well rounded debut novel (…) with moments of comedy and heartache (…) it promises a solid prose and spares no effort (…) a journey into modernity, a descent into the abyss of a unique, exceptional love story (…) the story of every relationship that must accept the challenges created by significant change.”

    Simona Sparaco, TTL

Gianfranco Vergoni

Gianfranco Vergoni is originally from Perugia but has settled in Rome. He has been a dancer, a singer and an actor. In a thirty-year theatre career, he has translated and adapted scripts and songs, directed and choreographed productions, written and staged recitals and musicals. Il cielo d’erba is his first novel.

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