Blessed by fortune (no snow, little rain) and taking advantage of the light of the very long days of May, Claudio Giunta took notes while Giovanna Silva snapped pictures to together produce the literary equivalent of a synch-sound tour of Iceland, off the beaten track. They ranged freely off Route 1 and along some rather rough roads, drawn only by their curiosity and intuition. In the process, they composed a document which presents an alternative view of a country currently topping the lists of international must-see itineraries.
The photos limn a solitude that at first glance can seem threatening but that, once explored, resolves into nothing short of exhilarating: the natural spectacle of lava, waterfalls and glaciers, along with power plants in the middle of nowhere, rural graveyards, and a NATO base that has been closed and is being gradually recovered by the landscape. At the same time, conversations with a surprisingly large number of interesting people (if human geography contains a metric for ‘density of interesting people’, then Iceland tops the charts) enrich the pictures. The end product, a choreography of word and image, attempt to answer the question implicit in the title of the book: Why should someone born twenty parallels to the south fall in love with Iceland?