Sonia Cardini’s Blood Glamour, published 2012 (possibly earlier), is an Italian novel with an English translation available.
The English isn’t perfect, but it’s easy to read and understand. It even adds a certain ‘authentic’ charm (‘authentic’ in the same way that pizzas taste better when the waiter is Italian). I have a persistent itch to fix the translation, but if I could do that then I’d be reading it in Italian anyway. I wish I could. Which do you think sounds better:
Mmm… I love Italian. (I’m suddenly reminded of this gorgeous phrase: la grandezza straordinaria de’ membri – see Alyth and the incubus.)
The story is narrated by Asia, a thirty-ish career woman, wealthy and with the androgynous beauty many models have, living in an apartment in a palazzo in Milan. She has refined and specific tastes in shoes, clothing, make-up, perfume,… and drives an expensive car. After receiving a high bill for inferior wine, she complains:
She’s very confident in her pursuit of women, but shies away from relationships, refusing to be pinned down even by the woman she loves.
All of this is character, and while she may seem like cruel seductress, a rich bitch more passionate about herself than others, underneath that is a human in need of something more profound and deserving of compassion. She is also a window on Milan, one of the great cities of fashion, and aspects of lesbian life there.
And there’s more… There’s a presence in Asia’s apartment, possibly inside Asia herself, that gradually becomes more tangible, more alive; that is both seductive and terrifying for her.