The Tiger of Noto

Original title: La tigre di Noto

Publication Date:

April 2021



Original language and publisher

Italian | Neri Pozza

Territories Handled

English (North America), Netherlands


Historical Fiction

The Tiger of Noto

Original title: La tigre di Noto


Simona Lo Iacono returns with a powerful story about the first Italian woman scientist, with a face like an angel and a body and strength like a tiger, fighting her way in a male academic world – la Repubblica

Author of an extraordinary stylistic elegance – Avvenire

With the introspective force that distinguishes her writing, Simona Lo Iacono portrays the protagonist’s soul and highlights her most hidden folds, outlining an extraordinary personality in which the knowledge, intuitions and interests are combined with an undeniable emotional void – Letteratitudine

Between the sunny, conservative and suggestive Sicily of the early 20th century and the years of German occupation in Italy, La Tigre di Noto tells the true story of Anna Maria Ciccone, the physicist who saved the books of Pisa University’s library from Nazi soldiers.

Anna Maria Ciccone was born in 1891 in a small town of Sicily called Noto. She comes from a traditional family. She grows as a strong and determined woman who, even in difficult times for the empowerment of women, pursues her dream of going to university and becoming a scientist. Shortly before the Great War, she becomes the only female student in the class of Physics-Mathematics of Pisa University. She studies spectroscopy, the physics of light. Due to her crooked eye, a birth defect which makes her to always look up, she sees the light from a different perspective. Watching the atoms dance and the alliances they make to form mysterious worlds, she has soon realized that light hides itself in the shadows and that you have to search for it where it cannot be seen.Thus, like a beam of light amid the darkness, Anna Maria fights to establish herself in a male academic world.In September of 1943, the Nazi troops occupy Northern Italy. A squad of soldiers is about to enter the University of Pisa, where Anna Maria is the only one on duty. Despite the fear, she has refused to abandon her workplace, her instruments and her books. All alone, she saves the library of the university from the violence of the Nazi soldiers.

A passionate and hypnotic true story of indomitable spirit that explores an era with an original angle. Like a clear and precise ray of light that Ciccone herself studied, La Tigre di Noto illuminates the life of a singular woman left in the shadows of history, revealing it in all its thrilling and trailblazing splendour.

Marketing Information

Under option: the Netherlands

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