|Plot Summary of The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana|
|"Giambattista Bodoni is a successful sixty year old rare book dealer from Milan who has lost his episodic or autobiographical memory and consequently doesn't know who he is and has no recall of any of the events of his life.
Yambo (his nickname) upon learning of his condition embarks on a quest to re-establish the events of his life. He returns to work and is troubled by his attraction to his young assistant: Sibilla. Did he sleep with her? Is she more than just his right hand woman - what does she think of him?
His wife Paola suggests that he go back to his childhood home and perhaps he will begin to remember who he is in what should be familiar surroundings. His childhood home( in Solara) is kept up by the Amalia the daughter of Yambo's Grandfathers' housekeeper. While several years older than Yambo she always doted on the young master and is thrilled that he will be staying at the Solara home. Yambo begins rummaging through all the old artifacts(books, phonographs, records, magazines, newspapers, an old Telefunken radio) attempting to piece together his early life. Meanwhile Amalia cooks extraordinarily rich meals with a great deal of salt and Yambo who has high blood pressure begins to suffer more health issues.
Then it happens - he stumbles across the name Lila. He calls his friend Gianni who tells him that he was madly in love with Lila in High School. He could do nothing for a year but dream about being with her. Gianni tries to jar his memory by telling him of certain times they shared and certain events of his High School years.
Yambo suffers a stroke and sinks into a coma. In his unconscious state he begins to regain his memory and starts to see the events of his childhood: his one wartime adventure, his philosophic conversations with his former teacher, his religious discussions with his family priest, his High School acting debut, and his first ejaculation."
Vincent Boscarelli, Resident Scholar
|"Yambo, a 60ish antiquarian bookseller in Milan, awakens from a mysterious coma to discover that he has no memory of himself. He can recall every poem, novel, or comic book he has ever read, but his wife, best friend, and daughters remain strangers to him. Although he remembers the ins and outs of the book-dealing business, his business partner, the Polish woman with whom he may have had an affair, is also a blur. In an attempt to retore his memory by spending time in familiar settings, Yambo returns to his family's home at Solara. There, he spends 8 days in the attic, reading the documents that were a vital part of his past - a past he cannot recall. He plays the records that he heard as a child, and rereads comic books put out by the Fascist government. What he reclaims, frustratingly, is not his own experience, but that of his entire generation.
Yambo discovers the poems he wrote as an adolescent, all of which mention a beautiful girl. This prompts him to interrogate his best friend, who tells him of his first love. It is only then that Yambo begins to reclaim memories that are his very own. His past mixes with the comic books he has recently read as Yambo reexperiences his adolescence as a feverish dream. But now that he has his memories, can he ever recover? "
Miranda Tedholm, Resident Scholar
|Review Analysis of The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana|
Our unique search engine provides a wealth of detail about books by breaking them down into many different literary elements, all of which are searchable (click here).
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Tone of book?
Time/era of story
Kind of romance:
- rekindling lost love/marriage
Is this an adult or child's book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
- small businessman
Is this an ordinary person caught up in events?
How sensitive is this character?
- middling sensitive to others' feelings
Sense of humor
- Cynical sense of humor
- Smarter than most other characters
- Very much smarter than other characters
- physically sick
- natural phenomena
How much of work is main antagonist actually present in:
- a substantial amount
How much descriptions of surroundings?
- 5 ()
Small town people:
- nice, like Andy/Opie/Aunt Bee
- mostly 1st
Accounts of torture and death?
- moderately detailed references to deaths
- explicit references to deaths
Sex in book?
What kind of sex:
- touching of anatomy
- actual description of hetero sex
- descript. of female anat. (the big B's)
- a lot of play on words
- a lot of flashback and forwards
- a lot of stream of consciousness
Amount of dialog
- significantly more descript than dialog
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Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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