A Month in Siena
by Hisham Matar
FROM THE PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING AND MAN BOOKER-SHORTLISTED AUTHOR
‘Sparkles with brilliant observations on art and architecture, friendship and loss’ Guardian
‘Everybody should get to spend a month with Mr. Matar, looking at paintings’ Zadie Smith, Wall Street Journal, Books of the Year
Matar was nineteen years old when his father was kidnapped. In the year following he found himself turning to art, particularly the great paintings of the Sienese School. They became a refuge and a way to think about the world outside the urgencies of the present.
A quarter of a century later, having found no trace of his father, Matar finally visits the birthplace of those paintings. A Month in Siena is the encounter between the writer and the city. It is an immersion in painting, a consideration of love, grief and a profoundly moving contemplation of the relationship between art and life.
‘A dazzling exploration of art’s impact on his life and writing, and a moving contemplation of grief’ Financial Times
‘I can think of no better expression of the humane than this economical, modest, yet altogether breathtaking book’ New Statesman, Books of the Year
‘Bewitching, intensely moving’ The Economist, Books of the Year