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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) HASH(0x9b50f2e8) étoiles sur 5 29 commentaires
14 internautes sur 14 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9b538ed0) étoiles sur 5 A Wonderfully Honest Glimpse into Modern Italy 7 octobre 1999
Par D. Lamkiewicz - Publié sur
Format: Broché
I've lost count of the times I've revisited Tim Parks' adopted home village of Montecchio and enjoyed his highly entertaining prose describing everyday life among his Italian neighbors. This little book is an absolute treasure, indispensable reading for everyone who loves Italy and Italian culture, warts and all. His observations on Italians and their ways are intuitive and honest, infused with the author's obvious affection for his subjects. One of my all-time favorites.
9 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9b538f24) étoiles sur 5 A nice description of a part of Italy 26 février 2002
Par Maurizio Tiso - Publié sur
Format: Broché
I have lived in the US for about 10 years, but I was
born and raised in Veneto, the region Tim Parks talks
about in his book. I find his descriptions of aspects
of life so close to reality that at times he made me
feel homesick. The touch of his pen is elegant and his
characters so real that I could have changed the names
and he would have been talking of people I used to know.
This is not a book about Italy but rather a book about a
specific part of Italy, Veneto. Also, no attempt is made
to explain the roots of sociological facts. For example,
Parks touches upon forms of racism towards the people
coming from the Southern part of Italy but makes no effort
to go to the roots of that sentiment.
If readers were to come out from reading this book with
the impression that there is a single Italy, that would
be the wrong thing. There are almost as many Italys as
there are regions. And some of the characters Parks brings
to life could not be found in Sicily, for instance.
Parks is overall very respectful of his adoptive country,
although some criticism to the Catholic Church is here
and there to be seen. It is a little bit unfortunate that
he fails to elaborate on the fact that Catholicism is very
much an integral part of today Veneto's cultural
inheritance and contradictions not too differently of what
it could be said to hold true for Ireland.
A more extensive analysis of Italy is available in a recent
book by another Englishman, Paul Ginsborg, who in his Italy
and Its Discontents, 1980-2001 analyzes the impact of
Catholicism in today Italian society. But, this last book
does not belong in the realm of fiction.
The episode about the dog, Vega, is likely to impress
a part of the American public in a negative way, but
it is not really typical of Veneto or Italy in general.
I can say that Italians love their pets, but are less
inclined than Americans to "humanize" them as the circle
of friends is closer and loneliness less of an issue.
The author does not fail to catch these aspects even if
he is not explicit about it.
Overall, I think that the book is excellent and I wish
that many people from Veneto could read it and see
themselves in the eyes of an Englishman. They would
have a lot to think about.
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9b53b378) étoiles sur 5 Best Account I Know of being an Expat in Italy 5 octobre 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur
Format: Broché
In a series of chapters that can almost stand on their own but are strung together to form the chain of one year, Tim Parks explains what it is really like to live in Italy. He devotes space to the joys of fresh peaches, the Christmas bonus, Italian funeral customs,and a myriad of other subjects, using beautiful prose as he explains the intricacies of Italian life.(I lived in Italy for a few years and I know that I could never approach his knowledge on the subject.) His tone is mostly of ironic detachment, an outsider not quite a full member of his village until the very end of the book, and he usually doesn't depict his neighbors as a bunch of hand-flapping stereotypes. So, why not 5 stars if I enjoyed this book so much? Well, he does play coy with the identity of his wife. (I suppose he hides the fact that she's Italian to make himself seem more adventurous and foreign, though some might say that anyone who would know marching songs of the Italian Alpine Troops would have to be a native.) And there is a subtle anti-catholicism which is most irritating, and out of place in a book that usually deals with its exploration of Italian life with sensitivity. It is still, however, the best book on the subject.
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9b53b72c) étoiles sur 5 Successful ex-pat view of foreign climes 24 mars 2000
Par saliero - Publié sur
Format: Broché
I found this to be the most successful of the "ex-pat" books I have read. Parks has chosen to live in Italy, and has both a love and respect for his wife's homeland, and another cultural perspective with which to look at its foibles and frustrations. Unlike Peter Mayle who seemed in A Year In Provence to be laughing AT some of the locals, and who was somewhat removed from daily life, Parks is fully immersed in everyday, workaday life, and in raising children, getting to know and battle with bureaucracies, admiring education systems etc. And unlike that great phoney Frances mayes, the Tuscan dilettante who jets in each summer to dabble in cute stone-villa Italy, Parks has to come to terms withh being a 'local' whist still being a straniero.
7 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9b53b828) étoiles sur 5 The best possible introduction to Italian life. 5 décembre 1997
Par Un client - Publié sur
Format: Broché
I was still reading this book when I arrived in Italy, and what a difference it made to my visit! I felt so at home, and enjoyed every minute, as if Tim Parks had personally introduced me to all his friends and neighbours. I found this book a delightfully good read, and look forward to reading the sequel. I've started on his novels now, too.
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