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101 Places in Italy : A Private Grand Tour- 1001 unforgettable works of art Flexibound – 10 Apr 2014


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Product details

  • Flexibound: 288 pages
  • Publisher: WILMINGTON SQUARE BOOKS (10 April 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1908524324
  • ISBN-13: 978-1908524324
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 272,193 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Reviews for '52 Italian Places': 'The author has achieved the near impossible - a must-squeeze-into-hand-baggage or the back pack' House and Garden 'Masterpieces come in all shapes and sizes, and this is a small one. [It is} like a conversation with a well informed friend. He tells you exactly what you want to know, in the most succinct terms' Country Life 'A minor classic' Times Literary Supplement

About the Author

Francis Russell was educated at Oxford and has travelled in Italy for over fifty years. He is currently Deputy Chairman of Christies, specialising in old master paintings, and has written numerous books, articles and reviews on, mainly, Italian subjects. Russell is also the author of 'Places in Turkey' and 'Places in Syria'.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Flexibound Verified Purchase
A brilliant little book! The indispensable companion for every traveler in Italy.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This is a great book for the armchair traveler! 4 Oct. 2014
By C. Martinelli - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
This very personal guide to Italy is ordered by region, from north to south and west to east. It harks back to the days of the Grand Tour, when wealthy families would tour Europe's top sights, learn as much as possible about the art, history, architecture and languages as possible, buy some paintings and souvenirs to remind them of the once-in-a-lifetime trip, and then head home, edified and ready to settle down in Britain, Canada, Australia, the U.S.A., ....

The author's voice is conversational and engaging. He has a perspective that many tourists lack today: he began traveling through Italy before the age of mass-tourism, when it was still possible to find a cicero, a private Italian guide at a place of interest. The reminiscences about a time when Italy's treasures were easily accessible and her streets were passable seems like from another century rather than from just a few decades ago. Such is the newness of the mass migration to enjoy Italy's riches that occurs each year.

The sights selected are personally meaningful to the author, and rigorously selected to give the most pleasure to the most people. They favor art, churches, buildings, small towns, monasteries, Roman Ruins, and Medieval towns. The region sections are fronted by simple maps of the region, marked by the general locations of the sights described. The text is accompanied by many images. All of Italy's history is covered, from tribal era, to Roman era, to the many conquerors.

The author provides tips on access to the sights, the history, the main attractions, some walking routes, and some quick descriptions of the art. For art lovers, other sources need to be consulted to provide further details about the many, many pieces of art to be seen at the many churches and museums. The book seems aimed at people planning a driving-tour of Italy, and is directed at British tourists in particular.

Many of the author's descriptions convey his deep love for Italy. The author does not shy away from pointing out that modern Italians too often lack appreciation for the beauty that their ancestors reveled in. Democratization has led to much ugly-fication of Italy.

I actually found the book a wonderful replacement for all the inconveniences and grime and insults experienced while actually traveling in Italy. This is a great book for the armchair traveler! It even includes a Glossary with Italian, historical, and art terms, and there is a full index.

Please read my full and illustrated review at Italophile Book Reviews.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Wonderful! 8 May 2014
By Gary Bellert - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Flexibound Verified Purchase
Well written and beautiful pictures! We are planning a trip to Italy and this book is will help us decide what to see.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Five Stars 6 Jun. 2014
By Christopher Kindelspire - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Flexibound Verified Purchase
enjoyable book
0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
This might be a fine book, and I will update this review after ... 26 July 2014
By Bonnie O - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Flexibound
This might be a fine book, and I will update this review after reading more of it. However, at the outset I'm frustrated that the 101 places are listed and described by region (Piedmont, Liguria, Lombardy, etc.) but there's no overall map of the country with the regions identified. There are minimalist maps of the individual regions with those sites mentioned nicely pinpointed and numbered but absent any other details. So this book without a more comprehensive guidebook in hand, or a familiarity with the geography of Italy, is not ideal. Once I get a DK Eyewitness Travel or other guide for Italy I can consider whether 101 Places has value.
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