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An Italian Education (Anglais) Relié – 29 avril 1996

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 3.7 étoiles sur 5 31 commentaires
11 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Edgier Sequel to Italian Neighbors 5 octobre 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This is a difficult review for me to write since my problems with Tim Parks's book have a can't-quite-put-my-finger-on-it-quality. There's much to enjoy about the book, of course--the descriptions of the beach culture in Italy are particularly wonderful. As an American who's lived in both Italy and England I really enjoyed the comparisons with child rearing, particularly the Italian obsessive floor moping culture with the English slightly more casual approach. I was glad, too, that Parks was open about his wife's Italian identity-- his coyness about her "nonforeignness" was irritating in "Italian Neighbors". Something, however, was lacking in this book for me. I missed the group of neighbors that he described with such detail--I missed their dramas, and their life stories. Mr. Parks seemed to exist in a vacuum with his family. (Now it could be that Mr. Parks ran into some trouble with being so free with other people's lives and decided to be more discreet; I don't know.) I do feel that this book was more disjointed and could have been compressed into a span of a year, or at least put into a more coherent framework, as he did with "Italian Neighbors". These aren't my main problems with the book. There is a bit of a sourness in the tone; it is as if Parks has made his Italian bed and must lie in it. He must also raise his children as Italian, for good or bad, and it is this dominant theme that he wrestles with throughout the book. Without a doubt this in an expatriot's main dilemma--to raise your children successfully in a different culture, you must raise them as foreign to yourself. I'm not sure, deep down, the Mr. Parks is entirely happy with this realization, and a bit of his disillusionment leaks out into the book. Gone is his tone of ironic detachment, and yes, there is often more warmth and feeling, but at what price? (I will mention, though, that the scene when he explodes near the German border after dealing with his beyond-colicky daughter was priceless and the best scene of either book for me) I guess what I'm trying to say is that I often pick up "Italian Neighbors" to reread bits of it, and I don't do that with this book. And that, ultimately, is the final review of all.
11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Disappointing 16 juillet 2001
Par Vince Cabrera - Publié sur
Format: Broché
I read "Italian Neighbours" in less than a weekend and couldn't wait for this book to arrive. Unfortunately, I found it a bit disappointing.
Like another reviewer, I can't quite put my finger on what it is that I don't like. Maybe TP sounds a little bitter and less ready to concede that there may be advantages to the Italian mindset. He seems to do nothing but whinge about Italy which started to wear on me a bit. Again, like the other reviewer, I also miss his previous neighbours. They were much better observed and more detailed than the current batch.
Furthermore, Park's observations about Italy in general are not as accurate as they were in "Italian Neighbours". He seems to have extrapolated life in Montecchio, a small place in the Veronese to the rest of Italy and sometimes this just doesn't hold water. A small example: contrary to Tim Park's writing, Italian shools DO offer extracurricular activities and they DO offer school sports. Well, at least in Lombardy they do.
As I said, I finished "Italian Neighbours" in under a weekend. I thought the book was so good that I really wanted to MEET Tim Parks. This second book took me over two weeks, and even that was real hard going what with Tim Park's constant whingeing and all. That just about says it all for me.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A delightful read 19 décembre 2001
Par Oliver Femminella - Publié sur
Format: Broché
In a very readable and delightful book, Tim Parks manages to capture to quintessential family life surrounding children growing up in Italy - trust me I was one of them !! Life at home, at school and at the summer seaside, are all affectionately captured by the author, as are the personal relationships with family, friends and neighbours. This is a book that everybody will enjoy, particularly touching and bringing back memories to those of us that grew up in Italy.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Che spettacolo! 17 mars 2001
Par Next Bestseller - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
What a pleasure to read! I carried it with me constantly for 4 days because I had to read at every red light and every grocery store line. What Tim Parks has accomplished is an honest telling of how different life in Italy must be from his homeland of the U.K. One expate that I met in Positano said that "In Italy nothing is ever quite normal," and therein lies its charm. If you dislike surprises, unexpected twists and turns, you better stick to the Teutonic countries because you will be unhappy in Italy. Parks, despite the occasional culture clash, seems to revel in Italy's lack of normalcy and has made the critical decision to raise his children in it. I will grant you that Parks has to resort to some overgeneralization about Italians, but, in retrospect, I don't see how he could have avoided doing so. The important truth that he reveals to the reader is that Italy is different than anywhere else in the world. As the occasional traveler, we cannot enjoy all the nuances of Italian life as Parks has been lucky enough to experience. One book that also points up these important embedded cultural differences is Italian Day by Barbara Grizzuti-Harrison. ENJOY!
6 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Entertaining, with a warm and perceptive view of Italy 22 octobre 1997
Par Un client - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This wonderful book is a moving and informative account of the author's trials and tribulations raising his children in Italy, and the discoveries he makes about Italian culture during the process. His occasional tendency to simplistically analyze the reasons behind the actions of his relatives, neighbors and friends might grate on the nerves of some readers (particularly those who dislike any criticism of organized religion), but nonetheless his love and respect for Italy and Italians is clearly visible throughout the book.
In particular, his charming anecdotes describing his vacations with his children while on the Adriatic coast of Italy struck a strong chord with me. His description of the Italian beach scene made me realize why I enjoyed my vacations on the coast of Italy so much. Throughout the rest of the book, some of his other observations and anecdotes brought me to a deeper awareness of what I both love and dislike about Italy, and further gave me a greater insight into the motivations, joys and aspirations of my Italian friends.
I don't know how this book will read if you haven't lived or travelled in Italy, but I would hope that it will give you an appreciation of the wonderful people and culture that I have found here. I read it in one sitting, and afterwards found myself moved to plan yet another expedition into the small beach towns along the coast near my home.
In all, this was certainly a wonderful, perceptive and inspiring book, underscored throughout by the author's wit. His earlier book about his Italian experience was certainly funny, but it didn't amuse nearly as much as this one, perhaps because much of his first book was so clearly intended to amuse. This book is witty, warm and loving at the same time and stood head and shoulders above his previous effort.
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