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The Calling of Saint Matthew

The Whale Chaser

The Habit of Art

In the Garden of Papa Santuzzu

Taking It Home

Larabi's Ox

The Evening News

Heart of the Order

In the Name of the Father

Biography of Tony Ardizzone


The Calling of Saint Matthew

The Fountain of the Four Rivers

My newest work, By the Fountain of the Four Rivers, is an episodic novel set in Rome between the morning of the devastating December 2004 South-Asian tsunami and the death of John Paul II in April 2005.

The chapters cycle around these events as well as the concerns of the book's central characters: a Boston stocks analyst and his pregnant wife, a young Montessori teacher from British Columbia involved with a married man, a Chicago-born hostess who takes a leave from her job in Tokyo’s Ginza district, a native Roman who works as a centurion outside the Colosseum, a pet-store owner from San Francisco who travels to Rome to trace the footsteps of his recently deceased daughter, a divorced New York academic facing an ethical dilemma at her university, and a former Christian Brother who travels to Rome to pray for his ailing stepsister and climb on his knees the steps of La Scala Sancta. Interweaving these characters are several recurring figures, including a Roman performance artist attempting to reenact the life of Caravaggio, a young woman from Ferentino who plays the organetto at the foot of the Fountain of the Four Rivers, an unscrupulous but highly knowledgeable German tour guide, and a former nun (kitchen sister) who has left her cloistered convent in Croatia for a life of social service in Rome.

The book is also about Rome itself, as each of its sections reflects, and draws its central narrative from, the religious art and history of one or more of the city’s churches. The book is loosely patterned after Krzysztof Kieslowki’s work, adapting aspects of his interconnected series of short films, The Decalogue, as well as his Three Colors trilogy and his film The Double Life of Véronique.

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