“Fermo”, that word firmly pronounced has attracted Sebastiano Caruso’s attention. He is a fatherless 17 years old whose life drastically changes that same day. The man who’s spoken is Baron Ludwig von Trier, a tall thin and pale photographer, flawlessly dressed, so different from anybody else living in Taormina. Sebastiano’s curiosity towards him is very intense thanks also to the mysterious box the Baron always carries around. When he finds out the boy has been following him, he lets him in a world Sebastiano could not even imagine it existed. The young man becomes his assistant and model, while the caring and wise maid Elena Amato turns into his friend and companion. Because of them, Ludwig learns something about love he had never been taught in the cold house he had been brought up.
Nevertheless, “wherever there is light there is also darkness”, and Ludwig will experience the darkest shadows of fascist violence and discrimination, also risking to be swallowed by them.
This novel is loosely based on the story of the German photographer Wilhelm von Glöden (1856-1931), on the freedom of thought and custom that characterizes art and that does not hate the different, on the fear of unveiling the violent ignorance that lives in the darkest meanders of the human disposition.