The Dry Heart
by Natalia Ginzburg (tr. Frances Frenaye)
‘I took the revolver out of his desk drawer and shot him between the eyes.’
Four years before she shoots her husband and walks to a café for a coffee, a lonely young woman living in a boarding house meets an older man called Alberto. They go for long walks along the river and on the outskirts of the city; they look like lovers, although they’re not.
Alberto doesn’t tell her anything about himself and she asks few questions. Still, with little else to distract her, she lets her imagination run wild and convinces herself to fall in love. Though he doesn’t feel the same, Alberto asks her to marry him and they have a baby. But Alberto is a man who tires quickly of everything.
The Dry Heart is a short, dark and psychologically rich novel that forensically examines how an unhappy marriage comes to end in murder.