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Viva l'Italia!

Escape to enchanting Italy...


Cassandra Steele

Indulge in a little escapism and whisk yourself off to the vivacious, beautiful and romantic country of Italy with this selection of Italian inspired books. Adventure in Venice, domestic living near Verona, passion in Capri, turbulent and exciting history in Florence... Buona lettura!


The Modern Italian Cook

Joe Trivelli, hardback


Joe Trivelli, co-head chef of the River Cafe, draws on his heritage to translate the best of Italian cooking into your kitchen.
Simple, clever, sympathetic and creative, this is a lovingly compiled book of genuinely mouth-watering Italian recipes, accessibly written and beautifully photographed.


The Mask of Aribella

Anna Hoghton, paperback


On the eve of her birthday, Aribella discovers she has a secret power - when angered, flames shoot from her fingertips. Frightened, she runs away, only to be rescued by a magical organisation of masked heroes with their own special skills. Aribella and her new friends have sworn to defend the city of Venice, but can they defeat the evil rising from the Island of Dead?


An Italian Education

Tim Parks, paperback


Tim Parks focuses on his own young children in the small village near Verona where he lives, building a fascinating picture of the contemporary Italian family at school, at home, at work and at play. The result is a delight: at once a family book and a travel book, not quite enamoured with either children or Italy, but always affectionate, always amused and always amusing.


The Captain’s Verses

Pablo Neruda, paperback


A native of Chile, Neruda nevertheless finished writing The Captain’s Verses in 1952 while in exile on the Italian island of Capri - the paradisal setting of the Academy-Award-winning film Il Postino. Surrounded and inspired by the natural splendour of the island, Neruda addressed these poems of love, ecstasy, devotion and fury to his lover, Matilde Urrutia. Later the same year, Neruda published The Captain’s Verses anonymously in an edition of fifty copies, fourteen years before he and Matilde legally married. The first “acknowledged” edition would not appear until 1963. This complete, bilingual collection has become a classic for lovestruck readers around the world - passionate, sensuous and burning with all the erotic energy of a new love.


The Medici

Paul Strathern, paperback


A dazzling history of the modest family which rose to become one of the most powerful in Europe, The Medici is a remarkably modern story of power, money and ambition. Against the background of an age which saw the rebirth of ancient and classical learning, Paul Strathern explores the intensely dramatic rise and fall of the Medici family in Florence, as well as the Italian Renaissance which they did so much to sponsor and encourage. Strathern also follows the lives of many of the great Renaissance artists with whom the Medici had dealings, including Leonardo, Michelangelo and Donatello; as well as scientists like Galileo and Pico della Mirandola; and the fortunes of those members of the Medici family who achieved success away from Florence, including the two Medici popes and Catherine de’ Medicis, who became Queen of France and played a major role in that country through three turbulent reigns.


Art in Renaissance Italy, Fourth Edition

JohnT. Paoletti & Gary M. Radke, paperback


Art in Renaissance Italy is a definitive work on the Italian Renaissance: innovative and scholarly, yet accessible and beautifully presented. The book puts the artworks into context and explores why they were created and who commissioned them. It covers a wide range of palaces, cathedrals, paintings and sculptures from across Italy, including towns and cities such as Assisi, Pavia, Genoa, Padua, Mantua, Verona, Ferrara, Urbino and Naples as well as Rome, Florence, Sienna, Venice and Milan. Provides fascinating glimpses of daily life and quotes from painters and writers of the time. This revised edition contains around 200 new pictures and nearly all colour images.