“My will and my desire were turned by love, the love that moves the sun and the other stars.” –Jace Wayland, City of Bones (2013)
“The contemporary reimagining of the 14th-century poem is among the first projects being developed by head of originals Lauren Corrao.
“The Freeform take follows Grace Dante, who thought her life sucked. Between parenting her drug-addict mother and her troubled brother, the twenty-something hero has had to give up all her dreams. Then one day everything changes and her dreams start magically coming true — school, career, love … but the godfather of all this good fortune is the devil himself. And to outwit him, Grace will have to journey through Dante’s Inferno, a contemporary reimagining of the 14th-century poem set against the demonic underworld of present-day Los Angeles.” — Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter, October 28, 2019
Little Wrecks is set in Long Island in 1979 and features three young women’s journey through sexual trauma to transcendence. Two characters discuss the Divine Comedy in the opening sequence and this discussion is revisited towards the close. The novel is structured in three sections/canticles, titled “Resistance,” “Reality” and “Resurrection.” Each of these ends with the word stars. It features a character named Virgil (Mackie) who appears and exits mysteriously and is perhaps not entirely corporeal. Virgil Mackie acts as a kind of guide for one of the central characters. Virgil and Ruth have, early on, something like that conversation in which Virgil points out that the poet’s body stops the light and we note that Virgil’s does not. The final passage of the novel echoes language found towards the close of both Purgatorio and Paradiso – the santissima onda, etc. It’s final sentence is “There is a place for her, between the sun and the other stars” so that it ends with Dante’s words. –Meredith Miller
Italian author Francesco Gungui completed the Canti delle Terre Divise trilogy this year: Inferno (2103), Purgatorio, and Paradiso (2014). Gungui’s young adult novels tell the story of Alec and Maj, two teenagers living in a dystopic city that resembles the landscape of The Divine Comedy. Gungui, a Milan native, is a popular young adult writer in Italy. The Canti delle Terre Divise series is his most recent work.
“Se sei nato a Europa, la grande città nazione del prossimo futuro, hai due sole possibilità: arrangiarti con lavori rischiosi o umili, oppure riuscire a trovare un impiego a Paradiso, la zona dove i ricchi vivono nel lusso più sfrenato e possono godere di una natura incontaminata. Ma se rubi o uccidi o solo metti in discussione l’autorità, quello che ti aspetta è la prigione definitiva, che sorge su un’isola vulcanica lontana dal mondo civile: Inferno.
“Costruita in modo da ricalcare l’inferno che Dante ha immaginato nella Divina Commedia, qui ogni reato ha il suo contrappasso. Piogge di fuoco, fiumi di lava, gelo, animali mostruosi rendono la vita difficile ai prigionieri che spesso muoiono prima di terminare la pena. Nessuno sceglierebbe di andare volontariamente a Inferno, tranne Alec, un giovane cresciuto nella parte sbagliata del mondo, quando scopre che la ragazza che ama, Maj, vi è stata mandata con una falsa accusa. Alec dovrà compiere l’impresa mai riuscita a nessuno, quella di scappare con lei dall’Inferno, combattendo per sopravvivere prima che chi ha complottato per uccidere entrambi riesca a trovarli…
“Il primo romanzo di una trilogia fantasy di grandissima potenza, scritta da uno degli autori italiani young adult più amati.” —Amazon
“I sometimes wonder what Dante or Milton or any of those guys would make of the modern appetite for the young-adult epic. It wasn’t always a lucrative thing, writing grand, sweeping, fantastical stories, you know. It was a job for nose-to-the-grindstone, writing-for-the-ages types, and worldly rewards were low. Milton died in penury, blind and obscure; Dante met his maker in literal exile. Would they look with envy upon their celebrated and moneyed modern analogues– your J. K. Rowlings, your Suzanne Collinses?” –Michelle Dean, “Our Young-Adult Dystopia,” New York Times Magazine, January 31, 2014
All submissions will be considered for posting. Bibliographic references and scholarly essays are also welcome for consideration.
Coggeshall, Elizabeth, and Arielle Saiber, eds. Dante Today: Citings and Sightings of Dante’s Works in Contemporary Culture. Website. Access date.