Check It or Leave It?

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library - Central LibraryFrancis A. Gregory Library

Check It or Leave It?

Join library staff members Peter and TaChalla as they discuss the rightfully neglected or undiscovered gems of the Popular Library at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library.

This episode’s pick: Family by Natalia Ginzburg.

family bookFamily is two novellas, “Family” and “Borghesia,” that sets the main characters in very mundane settings as they reminisce over a past full of passion and chaos. Kirkus has described Ginzburg as an “Italian minimalist.” Ginzburg writes in a style that is very short and to the point, yet there is so much to read in between the lines. “Her delicately oblique sketches of unlived lives linger like the memory of afternoon sun across a table” (Kirkus Review).

Natalia Ginzburg (1916 – 1991) was an Italian writer. Well-known in Italy, Ginzburg has written fiction, plays, essays and an autobiography. She was also a member of the Italian parliament.


  • Holt, Henry. “Family: Family and Borghesia, Two Novellas.” Kirkus. n.p. Web. 17 November 1988.
  • "Natalia Levi Ginzburg." Encyclopedia of World Biography. Detroit: Gale, 1998. Biography in Context. Web. 4 Mar. 2014.