A New York Times Notable Book of the Year: A deliciously entertaining account of expatriate life in a small village just outside Verona, Italy.
Tim Parks is anything but a gentleman in Verona. So after ten years of living with his Italian wife, Rita, in a typical provincial Italian neighborhood, the novelist found that he had inadvertently collected a gallery full of splendid characters. In this wittily observed account, Parks introduces readers to his home town, with a statue of the Virgin at one end of the street, a derelict bottle factory at the other, and a wealth of exotic flora and fauna in between.
Via Colombare, the village’s main street, offers an exemplary hodgepodge of all that is new and old in the bel paese, a point of collision between invading suburbia and diehard peasant tradition. It is a world of creeping vines, stuccoed walls, shotguns, security cameras, hypochondria, and expensive sports cars. More than a mere travelogue, Italian Neighbors is a vivid portrait of the real Italy and a compelling story of how even the most foreign people and places gradually assume the familiarity of home.
“One of the most delightful travelogues imaginable . . . so vivid, so packed with delectable details.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review