In recent years Naples has become, for better or worse, the new destination in Italy. While many of its more unusual features are on display for all to see, the stories behind them remain largely hidden. In Marius Kociejowski’s portrait of this baffling city, the serpent can be many things: Vesuvius, the mafia-like Camorra, the outlying Phlegrean Fields (which, geologically speaking, constitute the second most dangerous area on the planet). It is all these things that have, at one time or another, put paid to the higher aspirations of Neapolitans themselves. Naples is simultaneously the city of light, sometimes blindingly so, and the city of darkness, although often the stuff of cliché. The boundary that separates death from life is porous in the extreme: the dead inhabit the world of the living and vice versa. The Serpent Coiled in Naples is a travelogue, a meditation on mortality, and much else besides.