“Cutting for stone” by Abraham Verghese, recensione di Daniela Domenici
The door of the tears is that “narrow piece of sea
which separates Yemen and the rest of Arabia from Africa…a thin crack which
widens till it becomes the Red Sea to lengthen, then, to north toward the
horizon…”: and it is also the meeting point of all the movements, not only physical,
of the characters who populate this saga, which we can define “epic”, written
by Abraham verghese, surgeon and author of “La porta delle lacrime” perfectly
translated in Italian by Silvia Pareschi and edited by Mondadori.
The number of the pages, 676, could already frighten
those who decide to begin a voyage “into” this book; if I add that it is
steeped in innumerable descriptions of surgery operations and if I conclude saying
that most of the story takes place in Ethiopia with some “moments” in India and
in the USA, then who reads must bring all of this into account.
If he/she will have this courage, as I have had,
he/she will find himself/herself immersed in a fascinating, moving story, full
with tastes, smells and colors of the Ethiopian land (where the author was
born) and of the Indian one as well (where the author’s parents come from). The
mainstay of all the story is the particular symbiotic relationship of two
monozygotic brothers, Marion and Shiva, who are followed in their development,
either physical or psychological, by the writer with a very longing love and
with them all the characters who help them to become special persons, above all
their adoptive parents, who are surgeons, Hema and Gosh, splendidly described.
I want to conclude with the words written on the cover
on which I totally agree: the author is compared “to Dickens and Rushdie, to
Vikram Seth and Oliver Sacks, to Khaled Hosseini and to the Tv serial Grey’s Anatomy:
but it’s hardly to decide which kind of narrative is the most suitable because
Verghese measures himself, besides medicine, with love, abandon, betrayal,
redemption, revolutionary movements and migrations”.