The Volcano

Winner of the Queensland Premier’s Literary Award for Best Fiction Book (2002)

Shortlisted for the Courier Mail Best Book Award (2002)  

Sweeping from Sicily to Australia, spanning generations and very different worlds, The Volcano is a novel of power, passion and sheer blazing brilliance from one of our most talented and original writers.

‘Armanno writes with such intensity, his words detonate off the page…’

‘Like Louis de Bernieres, Armanno has a remarkable gift for touching stories with the language of legends and fairytales that creates magic for readers.’

‘Armanno writes superbly…’

‘Venero Armanno is a brilliant storyteller, a poet who never loses touch with reality.’

‘Venero Armanno assembles words like a poet.’


A fiercely original, beautifully written, multi-layered tour de force of immense power and humanity, The Volcano tells the tumultuous story of Emilio Aquila, a boy driven mad by love for a woman beyond his reach. His passion turns him into an outcast, forced to live away from his village in the labyrinthine caves high on the slopes of Sicily’s Mount Etna. His determination to right the wrongs dealt to him turns him into a kidnapper and a gangster – and compels him to seek a new life half a world away. But will he be able to escape the shadows of the past? And will Australia ever be more to him than a place of suffering and regret? An incandescent novel of abduction, passion and torment from the fiery heart of Sicily.

When the book was released Murray Waldren wrote a nice piece in The Australian: