The curfew, by Jesse Ball

22064667I read this book in just two days, and if I had not interrupted the reading, I would have ended it in just one afternoon.

The story goes about a mute girl and her young father, who used to be a great violinist but now works as an epitaphs writer. Her mother has disappeared, and probably killed, by the totalitarian and invisible government. Her father tries to go unnoticed, so he could guarantee a “normal” and happy existence for her. Around them, people disappear and get killed in the streets every day. The police doesn’t have an uniform, and that makes the father wonder “How do they recognize each other?”.

I thought that would be an important question for the development of the story, because the father runs, later, into an old acquaintance that talks to him about subversive actions done by the people. “They don’t recognize each other, that’s the point”, I thought. “There’s no police”, I thought, “They’re just normal people killing each other and that’s how the government works”, I thought. Well, we’ll never know. There are not much things told by the narrator. We are kept in ignorance of a lot of things. Do we need to know? Probably no, but surely one wants to know.

At the end, a few is told, but not by the narrator, but through a puppet play written by the girl and played by their puppeteer neighbor.

Did I like the book? Hard to define. It’s a very interesting universe, but I feel a bit conned, I wanted to know more.