Five Hundred Golden Chains
Original title: Cinquecento catenelle d’oro
A girl, a dream, a promise. A book that, like a dream, encourages us to lose ourselves so that we can find ourselves again.
Golden wheat ears bend as the wind blows. Maria looks at them, that land means the world to her family, they worked on it for generations. And, maybe, that same land will be her future’s only chance. But she wants more. Now that she has learnt how to read and new horizons opened up to her. Maria confides only in her father, he, alone, shares her dreams. And as he is forced to leave for America looking for a better life, Maria feels lost, only his letters bring back her smile. Letters full of buildings high as the sky, of photographs that move, of trains that run on a screen. The word motion-picture camera is too difficult, but it holds a promise for the future. Maria would love to spread the news but she is pointed out as a visionary, someone to stay away from. Until the day she meets Domenico, a young talented photographer, the first who believes the words of her father. This is why he seeks for an evidence, a proof of those images that come to life. Because Maria is not a liar, she is just a dreamer. And dreams can be scary. It takes courage to embrace change, to never stop learning. Maria and Domenico, together, can make the magic: a white sheet in a big square ready to tell the best story of all. Salvatore Basile is a fiction magician. Successful writer and screenwriter, after the bestselling books The Unpredictable Journey of a Lost Thing and The legend of the boy who believed in the sea, he is back with a book that, like a dream, encourages us to lose ourselves so that we can find ourselves again. A unique character that fights for a better world. A hymn to the timeless charm of the movies where everything is possible.
And then I looked all around me, the eyes of the peasants, numb, curious. I tasted a silence like no others, mine, similar to the moment before an explosion. That is when an overwhelming joy exploded inside me, I looked up towards the sky and I cried: “The movies! Those photographs are moving!”.