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“Ricci’s masterstroke to date. This novel does so well, on so many levels, that it’s hard to know where to begin tallying up the riches. . . . An ambitious, thrilling novel that resists encapsulation and takes not a single misstep . . . it is also bitterly, achingly funny.”
— Toronto Star
“The Origin of Species is a profoundly moving novel that lovingly creates a world of flawed but very real characters.”
— Winnipeg Free Press
“An entertaining and emotionally rewarding read, this book will transport Nino Ricci to further heights of literary stardom and could well overtake his first, Lives of the Saints, as his signature work — much as the original Origin of Species did to the career and life of Charles Darwin.”
— Ottawa Citizen
Nino Ricci was born in Leamington, Ontario, to parents from the Molise region of Italy. He studied English literature and creative writing at York University and Concordia University, then Italian studies at the University of Florence. He has taught literary studies and creative writing in Canada and abroad. He now lives in Toronto, and is a past president of the Canadian Centre of International PEN.
Nino Ricci’s first novel Lives of the Saints garnered international acclaim, appearing in fifteen countries and winning a host of awards, including Canada’s Governor General's Award for Fiction and the Books in Canada First Novel Award, and England’s Betty Trask Award and the Winifred Holtby Prize. Lives of the Saints formed the first volume of a trilogy that was completed by In A Glass House and Where She Has Gone, which was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize for Fiction. The trilogy was adapted for a miniseries starring Sophia Loren, Sabrina Ferilli, and Kris Kristofferson.
Ricci’s 2002 novel Testament was the co-winner of the Trillium Award and was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Prize for Canada and the Caribbean and the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize. It has been published in several languages around the globe and was a Times Literary Supplement Book of the Year.
In 2006, Ricci was named the inaugural winner of the Alistair MacLeod Award for Literary Achievement. His most recent novel, Giller-nominated The Origin of Species, was published in September 2008.
Book Review by Ethel Clark
The Origin of Species by Nino Ricci
Published in Canada, Sept. Read more
I read this book with great interest: it is superbly written, the flashback format is well done and it is interesting to relive the Montreal of the mid 80s. Read morePublished on June 3 2009 by Montcler
Expected more from this Governor General Award recipient. Central character not winsome. Could have been an enjoyable plot - graduate student with a thesis advisor from hell but... Read morePublished on Feb. 18 2009 by Elaine J. Seymour
There are many facets of Ricci's writing that I am very comfortable with in the two novels of his I have read so far: "In a Glass House" and his latest "The Origin of Species". Read morePublished on Jan. 9 2009 by Ian Gordon Malcomson
Somewhat of a disappointment, Nino Ricci's prize winning novel takes an awful long time to get to the point... Read morePublished on Dec 24 2008 by Amy