White Christmas, Black Magic

By Susan Harris

For a twist on seasonal themes, check out Angelo Cannavacciuolo's "White Christmas," from our December 2008 issue. Yes, the story takes place on December 23 and 24, and snow does finally fall; but the title refers to the perfume with which the hooker Maria has ensorcelled the older, married Antonio, and the setting is not bucolic Vermont but the squalid Camorra stronghold of Villaggio Coppola.  Antonio, besotted, abandons thirty years of numb respectability to pursue his "miracle," Maria. His dream turns nightmare, anything but merry and bright.


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