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The Wine of Youth

4.07  ·  Rating Details ·  1,531 Ratings  ·  57 Reviews
This new edition of the legendary Dago Red, first published in 1940, contains seven new stories, including "A Nun No More" and "My Father’s God."
Paperback, 272 pages
Published August 16th 2002 by Harper Perennial (first published 1940)
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Stefania T.
Jan 19, 2015 Stefania T. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourite

"È lui!"
"Shhhhhh, abbassa la voce."
"Smettila di indicare col dito..."
"Ma ti dico che è lui! Mi conosce, vivo con lui, stai tranquilla, guarda!"
"Ma vieni via, smettila, non strillare...per favore..."

Mi hanno portato via. Trascinata di peso come un manichino da vetrina in allestimento. Hanno detto che non potevo stare appiccicata alla finestra sul retro, che quello era spiare (spiona a me!), alone della bocca spalancata, timbro del naso spiaccicato contro il vetro e tutto il resto. Ma q
Descubierto tardíamente, John Fante escribió una serie de novelas cuyos protagonistas, la mayoría de veces alter egos del propio autor, le servían para describir sus fracasos como escritor en ciernes. John Fante escribe desde la ternura y el humor, para narrarnos sus experiencias con la religión, el matrimonio, el trabajo y la familia, casi siempre de origen italiano.

‘El vino de la juventud’ guarda muchos puntos en común con sus novelas ‘La hermandad de la uva’, ‘Un año pésimo’ y ‘Llenos de vida
Jul 27, 2013 Hamish rated it it was ok
Shelves: re-read-lit, lit
A high two stars. There are a couple of really good stories in here (Scoundrel, In the Spring, A Kidnapping In the Family) that bring to mind Fante's best work, but there's also a lot of corniness and false sentimentality. I like Fante, I really do, but most of this showcases his worst tendencies. For example, several of the stories take place when our protagonist is a kid or in his early teens and he changes his prose style to reflect the way a boy that age would write. I guess in theory it's c ...more
Joe Alewine
Jun 30, 2007 Joe Alewine rated it it was amazing
If for nothing else than "A Wife for Dino Rossi," Fante deserves to be considered in the top echelon's of American writing.
Jan 24, 2016 blakeR rated it really liked it
This has been on my to-read list for a while. I was waiting to find it used but never could, and finally I broke down and borrowed my friend's copy, knowing full well that I'd probably love it and want to own it afterward anyway. I was right.

The stories are inconsistent in quality but there is enough magnificence to make the entire collection essential. They're all autobiographical, mostly about his childhood in Colorado as an Italian Catholic, so they tend to blend together, something that also
Mar 26, 2012 Thatsbadshiva rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Light, funny, deceptively simple and stylish as heck. And the story, Home Sweet Home is the finest short story ever written. It reads like poetry. Truly a writer's writer, ol' John Fante!
Jan 23, 2016 Elisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Una delle cose più belle da fare davanti a un bicchiere è farsi raccontare la vita di chi ci sta davanti. Non solo le beghe quotidiane, ché per quelle è difficile trovare una soluzione pratica quando in testa si hanno solo il bisogno di staccarsi dal mondo e farsi lingua e gola, solo lingua e gola e piacevole vertigine, almeno per un po'. Sono gli episodi della propria personale mitologia a costituire l'accompagnamento migliore, e per una ragione molto semplice: proiettano in un passato felice. ...more
Henar SP
Jan 11, 2016 Henar SP rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Hoy he terminado la recopilación de relatos titulada El vino de la juventud, de John Fante. Este señor que veis aquí fue el escritor favorito de Bukowski, y aunque con este dato pueda parecer que era un autor irreverente o maldito como B., no lo es. De hecho me ha sorprendido y si puedo leeré más de él.
Fante fue guionista en Hollywood , pero su éxito como escritor fue póstumo y sobre todo a raíz de que Bukowski redescubriese su obra, confesando que había sido su inspiración.
Estos relatos se pue
Jun 18, 2015 Lee rated it it was amazing
John Fante is quickly becoming my favorite writer. His greatness is not something I can demonstrate through an plot synopsis. It's the way he writes that blows me away. I want to read anything this man has ever written, even if it's a post it note on a fridge.
Lane Wilkinson
Sep 10, 2007 Lane Wilkinson rated it really liked it
Isn't Black Sparrow Press great!

This collection represents Fante at his best. Recounting his Italy-meets-the-Front-Range upbringing, Fante is never again so lucid and engaging.
Davide Rubini
Nov 30, 2015 Davide Rubini rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first Fante, the one that spurred the curiosity and lead me to read them all. Anger, humiliation, love all condensed in the life of small characters pursuing the dream of a normsl American life.
Fabio Franca
Mar 23, 2013 Fabio Franca rated it it was amazing
This is my favorite book. Touching short-stories gems about love, family, Italians, school, religion, and so on. All written with such passion that there is no way you can ignore it.
Jul 01, 2010 Matthew rated it it was amazing
bukowski who?
Nov 18, 2014 Mikelkpoet rated it it was amazing
Great short stories. I loved the book.
Monique Vic
Jan 07, 2017 Monique Vic rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The short stories every writer would like to be able to write.
Sep 27, 2016 Librofilia_it rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Se è vero che un racconto ferma il tempo e lo sospende per una manciata di istanti, "Dago Red" - libro che raccoglie i migliori racconti scritti da John Fante tra gli anni Trenta e Quaranta - permette di fare un balzo temporale non indifferente, perché ci fa entrare nelle vite della strampalata famiglia Toscana, ci fa accomodare al loro tavolo per degustare oltreoceano i tipici piatti della cucina italiana e per sorseggiare il classico vino rosso rubino tanto amato dai WOP e infine, ci ricorda d ...more
Paul Hansbury
Oct 03, 2016 Paul Hansbury rated it liked it
I plan to read, 'Ask The Dust,' next.
Apr 24, 2013 Lolo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un recueil de nouvelles mettant en scène majoritairement le même héros, un jeune américain, fils d'immigrants italiens. Sa famille vit dans une petite ville des États-Unis, dans une simplicité proche du dénuement, une forme de misère même, dont le père est l'artisan majeur ; violent, volage, joueur et un peu alcoolique, il fait planer un climat de terreur sur ses proches. Ainsi, on suit les traces de cette tribu, au travers de ces histoires plus ou moins courtes, allant de la rencontre des paren ...more
Andrés Cabrera
Sep 25, 2016 Andrés Cabrera rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Relatos cargados de amor y soledad, del dolor dulce que deja la cercanía con alguien que se quiere. Esto es John Fante: sentimientos que bullen en las palabras, y que chocan en el pecho, agrietándolo, sumiéndolo en la alegría de vivir.

Los relatos constitutivos del libro son de su primera formación literaria. Allí, ya se empiezan a ver varias escenas posteriormente retomadas en sus novelas, sobre todo en "Espera la primavera, Bandini", "Sueños de Bunker Hill" y "La hermandad de la Uva". Eso sí, c
Jul 17, 2016 Steve rated it really liked it
A great collection of short stories from Fante that feel like sketches of his best novels. There is a pretty even mix of very autobiographical stories of growing up in Denver and writing as a struggling adult in Bunker Hill. Some of these antics really crack me up and it's not often a book has me laughing aloud. Aside from a bit too much content about growing up in a religious community these stories leave me enthralled. A few stories in particular are just perfect but I'll leave it to you to re ...more
Rather episodic--despite what one perceives as the attempt to tie all the stories together (or the assumption that they will mesh). Best story "Home Sweet Home"--sort of reminding me of "In Dreams Begin Responsibilities"--the only one that really stands out like that. And a few good lines--like: "The water was too cold for drinking. It seized your teeth like electricity and you sucked it timidly." Basically this sort of Saroyan mishmash--where you just put everything down pellmell without reflec ...more
The finest short stories ever written. Especially, The Odyssey of a Wop and My Mother's Goofy Song. Classical Fante at his best. I could actually see him slipping the story into a mailbox as he waited by the desk in his sunny bedroom looking at the palm tree, with a growling empty stomach for a cheque to arrive from the magazine. The earlier stories have that familiar roughness and show signs of struggling genius. While the stories at the end, the later stories, are masterfully written with not ...more
Oct 31, 2009 Jeff rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
This book was a bit more good-natured than my typical reading. I don't usually read stories where the narrator is a child or someone looking back on their childhood.

The best parts for me were the Catholic-guilt sections.

A couple of the stories dealt with the author in adulthood, getting away from religion to the despair of his family - I wonder if that's a theme of Fante's L.A. novels.

3.5 stars
Jul 24, 2015 Scott rated it liked it
The bulk of this book is “Dago Red”, Fante’s 1940 collection of stories all involving the same family and dealing with growing up in a Catholic Italian working class family in Denver, and these are by far the best stories here. The stories not set in that environment aren’t nearly as good.

I was curious as to where some of the later stories originally appeared – they seem like they might have been aimed at a juvenile readership.
Apr 21, 2014 Cibernetes rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Cuentos escritos con maestría, trece relatos que harán sonreír al lector. Todos los relatos, exceptuando los dos últimos, giran en torno a una familia de origen italiano. El narrador es el hijo mayor, las historias se desarrollan en Colorado en los años veinte. Asistimos a sus encuentros y desencuentros del narrador con su familia y con su creencia católica. El libro es un verdadero banquete literario.
Steven van Hasselt
Then she was gone, running out of the room and down the hall. We heard her rushing down the stairs and the click of the lock in her door. Cristo stared after her.
"She is so beautiful," he said. "More beautiful than my Charleen."
"She loves you."
"For me she do this. Change to blonde. Is wonderful. I am big fool. Twenty years in America, I look for wrong thing. Is not clothes. Is not yellow hair. Is love. Is here." He tapped his heart.
"Tell her that, Christo."
Mario Schievenini
Feb 19, 2016 Mario Schievenini rated it it was amazing
Excelentes cuentos de Fante, en verdad tiene esa capacidad de hacer que el lector sienta que hablan los niños protagonistas. Algunos cuentos son muy divertidos y la temática que tratan suele ser aquella que dicta el catolicismo a los jovenes (arrepentimiento, perdón, miedo y unión de la familia). Excelente también el acercamiento a estos temas por parte de jóvenes que son descendientes de italianos y por parte de sus costumbres.
Feb 06, 2014 Jorge rated it really liked it
una novela que cargada de relatos te hace disfrutar la peculiar forma de tomar a un personaje que fue creado para entretener y cargarlo de aventuras y desventuras, de miedos y sueños, rodeandolo de una familia complicada pero igual de interesante... cada historia se paladea de muy buen gusto. febrero 2014
Sep 22, 2008 Jeremy rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: few
Shelves: fiction-general
A collection of short stories that are really only of interest to someone who has completed most of his novels, and even then only if you want to see how he built up a bunch of similar short stories into a few novels. Just borrow it from me if you want to read it.
Aug 15, 2015 Tom rated it really liked it
Good collection. Sometimes repetitive. Heavy focus on Fante's own Catholic upbringing and family life. Doesn't feature Bandini or Fante, but the characters are clearly him.

Really enjoyed the later works, about Fante's life in California.
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Fante's early years were spent in relative poverty. The son of an Italian born father, Nicola Fante, and an Italian-American mother, Mary Capolungo, Fante was educated in various Catholic schools in Boulder, Colorado and briefly attended the University of Colorado.

In 1929, he dropped out of college and moved to Southern California to concentrate on his writing. He lived and worked in Wilmington, L
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“I will drink wine now, for I must prepare myself for the question which my mother will now ask. She will say: “Do you go to Mass every Sunday, my Jimmy?” I will answer: “Sometimes, Ma. Sometimes.” I will be lying. She will ask: “Do you still read books against God?” I will say, lying again: “Not any more, Ma.” And I will look at the face of my mother, and I will remember a night when we lived in the South, and I came home, and I saw my mother in tears, and sick unto death, and the doctor was called, and he saved my mother, and he came out of the room wherein my mother lay, and he held a book in his hand, and he handed it to me, and he said: “This is the cause. If you must read such stuff as this, do it where your mother can’t see you.” When I looked at the book, I saw that it was the The Anti-Christ. Now I will be home soon, and my mother will ask if I read books against God, and I will answer that I do not.” 2 likes
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