Luca Brunoni
144 pages, Euro 16,00

A fast-paced story recounting a quest for redemption, taking place in the so-called “Swiss Amsterdam” of the early 2000s. Gionata, a boy who lives a dangerous life on the border between law and crime, faces the resurfacing of a secret he thought he had buried forever. He risks getting into serious trouble, and he has to choose whether to defeat the ghosts of the past or let himself be dragged into a fatal whirlpool. The backdrop of his struggle is an unusual Lugano, tinted in noir.

After Silenzi (“Silences”), which won the Leggimontagna 2020 Award and is soon to be published in France, Luca Brunoni is back with a thrilling, fast-paced work: Indelebile, “Indelible”. It’s a story of errors that lead to consequences; a tale both intimate and universal, where a young man seeks for his redemption despite the non-erasable marks that scar him from the inside.

The story takes place in the early 2000s, in an unusual Lugano, tinted in noir: a city that was then known as the “Swiss Amsterdam”, with its suburban playgrounds, uninspired flats and assembly lines. Gionata, a boy in his early twenties, lives off a casual job in a factory, does some petty trafficking, and is in denial towards his future: his plan is to not have any plans.
Surviving the hardship of his teenage years, and after going for a “grown-up” trip with his friends, doing his military service and starting university, Gionata manages to become a young man with some confidence. But in the blink of an eye everything falls apart, and he soon becomes a spectator of his own life.
He meets a girl he had lost sight of for a long time and decides to help her, but then a secret he thought he had buried forever comes back to haunt him. While his “business” goes down the drain, and he risks getting into serious trouble, Gionata will have to choose whether to face the past and take the reins of his life, or let himself be dragged into a fatal whirlpool.

In the words of the author, Luca Brunoni: “I would call Indelible an ‘existential noir’: its fast-paced and cinematic plot hides a story of the soul. The story itself is fictional, but its foundation are some vivid memories and experiences that, for me, will always be non-erasable. I wanted to experiment with a more intimate writing style, with fragments of life finding their place in a bigger, universal tale. I’ve tried to speak to many readers, both younger and older than me, while using the imagery and voice of my own generation. The point is: a single moment, a single mistake can mark the rest of one’s life. This novel is an exhortation to cope with our wounds and to mend the bonds with the people we know.”


I have always pleaded guilty. I said it during the interrogations and I repeat it now, so that no doubt remains.
But in the end, it is you who will decide. That’s how the system works, isn’t it?
My lawyer told me that the purpose of Law is to restore the balance, to fix things. I told him, that’s massive bullshit. He reconsidered, and said that maybe not, maybe Law can’t actually fix a damn thing, but he insisted on the concept of balance.
In a way I agree.
I agree, because I’ve tried with my own hands to put things back into balance. But I failed.
Now my only hope is you.


Luca Brunoni (1982) lives in Switzerland, back and forth between Lugano and Neuchâtel, where he works as a teacher and researcher in the fields of Law and Criminology. A writer and a screenwriter for TV, he has published Il cielo di domani (“Tomorrow’s Sky”, Fontana, 2017) and Silenzi (“Silences”, Gabriele Capelli Editore, 2020), which won the award Leggimontagna 2020 – Sezione Narrativa, and is about to be published in France.

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