Biographies and Publications – Nino Ricci and Thomas Mann

Nino Ricci

Born 1959 in Learnington, Ontario, to Italian parents.
Ricci studies in Toronto, Montreal and Florence, Italy.

His first novel, Lives of the Saints, becomes an international bestseller and is translated into 10 other languages. First in a trilogy, the novel wins the Governor General’s Award and the W.H. Smith/Books in Canada First Novel Award.

Ricci serves as one of the directors of PEN Canada and 1995/96 as president of PEN Canada.

His second novel, In a Glass House, is published.

His third novel, Where She Has Gone, is the final part of Ricci’s Vittorio Innocente trilogy and gets nominated for the Giller Price.

Testament, his first historical novel, a retelling of the life of Jesus by Judas Iscariot, Mary Magdalene, Blessed Virgin Mary and Simon, is published and gets shortlisted for the Commonwealth Prize Carribean/Canada and named a Vancouver Sun Book of the Year.

Lives of the Saints gets adapted as a Canadian-Italian TV mini-series starring Sophia Loren, Nick Mancuso and Kris Kristofferson.

The Goethe-Institut Toronto connects Ricci with German author Thomas Medicus to talk about national identities and European family secrets after the war. Exploring the family relations in a small rural Italian village in the 1950s, Ricci’s first three novels form a trilogy with a strong focus on Germany and Italy in World War II and the post-war repercussions for Italian immigrants in Canada.

The novel The Origin of Species, a national bestseller, earns Ricci the Canadian Authors Association Fiction Award as well as his second Governor General’s Award for Fiction.

As part of Penguin’s Extraordinary Canadians series, Nino Ricci publishes a biography of Pierre Elliot Trudeau. The Origin of Species is nominated for the Trillium Book Award.

He was appointed a member of the Order of Canada. 

His most recent novel, Sleep, wins Ricci his second Canadian Authors Award for Fiction and is a Toronto Star Top 5 Book for 2015 as well as a Globe and Mail and National Post Best Book.

Ricci has been a recipient of the Alistair MacLeod Award for Literary Achievement, of York University’s Pinnacle Achievement Award, of the Engel/Findley Award for a Writer in Mid-Career, and of an honorary doctorate from the University of Windsor.

Nino Ricci is married to novelist Erika de Vasconcelos and lives in Toronto.

Thomas Mann

Born 1875 in Lübeck, Germany, into a prosperous and cultured merchant dynasty.
Mann’s father dies of cancer and the family estate is liquidated.

Mann’s mother moves the family to Munich.

His first short story collection, Little Herr Friedemann, is published.

Works as co-editor for the satirical news magazine Simplicissimus.

His first novel, Buddenbrooks, is published. A cheaper second edition, published in 1903, unexpectedly turns the book into a national bestseller.

His novella Tonio Kröger – widely regarded as his most personal and autobiographical work – is published.

Marries Katja Pringsheim, daughter of a wealthy and intellectual Jewish family. The couple has six children.

Writes his short story Felix Krull, that only gets published in 1922 and later expanded into his final novel, Confessions of Felix Krull, published in 1954.

His novella Death in Venice is published.

Strongly in favour of the war, he ceases to talk to his older brother Heinrich, an outspoken pacifist, and a famous author himself.

His novel The Magic Mountain is published.

His novella Mario and the Magician is published.

For his first novel, Buddenbrooks, Mann is awarded the Nobel Prize. His more recent and very successful novel The Magic Mountain at the same time is panned by the committee and notably excluded from their decision to award him.

His tetralogy Joseph and His Brothers is published.

Following the Nazi takeover, the family lives in exile in Zürich.

In an essay for the New York Times, he famously notes: Where I am, there is Germany. I carry my German culture in me. I have contact with the world and I do not consider myself fallen.

The family emigrates to the US where Mann is appointed Visiting Professor at Princeton University.

His novel Lotte in Weimar is published at a Stockholm exile press.

The family settles in Pacific Palisades, California.

His novel Doctor Faustus is published.

First visit to post-war Germany.

Moves back to Switzerland.

Dies from a rupture in his leg.