The Serpent Coiled in Naples


Product Details

$27.95  $25.99
Haus Pub.
Publish Date
6.22 X 9.37 X 1.81 inches | 1.65 pounds

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About the Author

Marius Kociejowski is a poet, essayist and travel writer. He is the author of several books, including The Street Philosopher and the Holy Fool: A Syrian Journey and The Pigeon Wars of Damascus.


"Kociejowski's words pulse with the beating heart of this extraordinary city."
--Katherine Wilson
"At turns hilarious and profound."
--Diana Darke
"Kociejowski is a near invisible narrator, so completely caught up in his quest that he walks us through the mundane veil of everyday life to encounter real story-treasure."--Barnaby Rogerson
"Kociejowski's book (which takes its title from the Sicilian proverb 'Never fear Rome -the serpent lies coiled in Naples') is one of the best I have read on the ramshackle Mediterranean outpost (and I have read a few). In pages of scholarly but engagingly droll prose, Kociejowski conjures a death-haunted city, where the meaning of life is everywhere connected to what it is to die. . . . A pungent amalgam of reportage and travel, The Serpent Coiled in Naples does Naples and its citizenry proud."-- "The Spectator (UK)"
"A Serepent Coiled in Naples makes for excellent armchair travelling. And it may well tempt one to visit this effervescent if dangerous hive of the South of Italy."-- "Fortnightly Review"
"[The Serpent Coiled in Naples] takes on some of the largest questions that come with searching for this stupendous city's soul: Has paganism survived Christianity in subtle or not so subtle ways? Do people think differently about death when living in immediate reach of a large volcano? What does their music tell us? . . . Now, having become a proud if honorary Neapolitan--anybody can become one, just as anybody can become a New Yorker, by sheer affinity--Kociejowski reaches his own conclusions about how to live next to a volcano, via the right philosophy and a little prestidigitation."-- "The New Yorker"
Named one of the best books of 2022. -- "New Yorker"
"One of the engines powering [Kociejowski's] writing is a poet's relish for language, be it modern street lingo or 'technically flawless' fifteenth-century pornographic verse... The other is an omnivorous erudition."-- "Times Literary Supplement"
'To write about Naples, you really need to be a poet-or, even better, an antiquarian bookseller. Kociejowski is both and has produced a delightful work that is as eclectic, labyrinthine, ironic and shocking as the city itself."-- "Economist (best books of 2022)"