The Black Rose cover

The Black Rose (anon.)

A collection of stories gathered during the mid-1980s through to the end of the 1990s as photographer David Pisani was working on the Vanishing Valletta Project.

During this time he frequented many red light districts, most notably Strait Street in Valletta and it is here that the stories emerged. Pimps, prostitutes, pornographers and politicians are all in there as Malta struggled with post-independence trauma and AIDS and the internet hadn’t yet arrived to spoil the party.


Whiskey was 50 cents, and if you drank steadily the shots got bigger and bigger. You also got hobż bil-kunserva, and cubes of cheddar cheese and ham on a toothpick. That was a good enough reason to go there, but that’s not why I went there almost every night.

from Tico Tico (Strait Street, Valletta)



The book is a work of fiction based on real stories.

You can buy the limited edition or regular version of the book here.