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One-hundred and One Beautiful Small Towns of Italy (101 Beautiful Small Towns) [Hardcover]

Paolo Lazzarin
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

4 Nov 2004 101 Beautiful Small Towns
101 reasons to go back to Italy! This compact information-filled volume will take you from the jewel-like atmosphere of the Amalfi Coast with its Byzantine Duomo, to the refined beauty of Siena and its world-renowned Palio; to the ancient Etruscan hill-town of Cortona and more. An excellent arm-chair guide, this remarkable book takes readers on a tour of Italy's 101 most spectacular villages and towns, all of which are presented in vivid colour images side by side with their history and most important sights. In addition, each entry features suggestions of what to see, do, eat, and buy, while a detailed appendix tells you exactly where to go for the best of each.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 276 pages
  • Publisher: Rizzoli International Publications (4 Nov 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847826376
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847826377
  • Product Dimensions: 26 x 26 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 484,298 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

PAOLO LAZZARIN is a journalist and photographer living and working in Milan. He has been collaborating with numerous Italian and international newspapers since 1965 and has co-authored several encyclopedias as well as numerous books on photography, tourism, and sports. He lives in Milan, Italy.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ITALIAN WONDERS 4 Sep 2009


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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book 23 Nov 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Inspiring me to visit Italy more often - and to see interesting places - looking forward to my morning coffees and afternoon Camapris!
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good book 24 Nov 2011
By Fionn
This is a nice book really enjoyed it. Bought the Italian version as well also good.
Another book I would recommend in a similar vein but a food tour of Ireland is Sean Monaghan`s A Taste of Cork also available from Amazon A Taste of Cork: A Gourmand's Tour of Its Food and Landscape
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.4 out of 5 stars  30 reviews
64 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must for Devotees of Italy and Italian Culture 16 Nov 2004
By Grady Harp - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
ONE HUNDRED AND ONE BEAUTIFUL SMALL TOWNS OF ITALY is a lavishly illustrated insider's look at the Italy as known to Italians. Writer Paolo Lazzarin took on this project of focusing on the secret treasures within Italy and wrote it for Italians. Now Rizzoli has released it internationally and all of us who love this most romantic of countries are the richer for this guidebook.

Lazzarin has divided his book into the multiple regions of Italy from the north to the south and shows us all the hidden small towns that are in the regions of the famous cities such as Venice, Milan, Florence, Siena, and Rome. He is careful to acknowledge the influence of these cities we all know, but at the same time he graces each of the 101 towns with descriptions of the land the architecture, the artisans, the foods, and the special places that provide a strong magnet to the reader.

Many of the towns names are familiar, but only because the names appear on cheeses, wines, olive oil, and trinkets! Yet in this book the towns of Spoleto, San Gimignano, Arezzo, Gallipoli, Portofino, Gubbio, Ischia, Modena, Aosta and all the others come to life in warm prose and breathtaking photography.

This special book is illuminating as a resource guide for the next voyage to Italia; it also is one of the more beautiful gift books for treasured friends and loved ones on the market today! Grady Harp, November 2004.
132 of 152 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Italy 101 25 Nov 2004
By Bill Marsano - Published on
By Bill Marsano. An old Italian pastime is the compiling of lists of the 'cento citta'--the hundred most appealing Italian cities and towns. Candidates should be small enough for intimacy but big enough to afford urban pleasures. They needn't be sunk in wilderness but countryside should certainly be at hand. Agreeable climate? Another plus. The lists are always highly personal and endlessly debatable, and here's Paolo Lazzarin, journalist and photographer, with his own nominations. He outdoes tradition by selecting 101 towns, all, per the subtitle, beautiful and small.

And all in all, he does a pretty good job; certainly this book will help the Italy-lorn struggle through a long winter of discontent with being too far from the Blessed Peninsula. And, as Jane Austen wrote, or should have, "It is a truth universally acknowledged that staring at pictures of Italy never did a body any harm." The photos are the principal part and appeal of the book; this is not a survey course ("Italy: From the Etruscans to Berlusconi"). There is an abundance of them but I could wish more were better and/or better chosen.

Some do not illustrate, others do not evoke, and still others are well-worn tourist-office images. For example, here you'll get no hint of what Riva del Garda actually looks like, and still less of Faenza, which is represented only by its famous ceramics. In San Remo, must we see the casino--again? The entry for Valenza has an extended caption about a nature reserve sitting beside a large and ordinary shot of a palazzo's interior staircase.

As for the writing, the best I can say is that it avoids the customary excesses; Italians are too often overwhelmed by patrimony and resort to cheerleading in prose form. On the other hand, Lazzarin is mechanical, unspired. It's hard to believe that he's really at one with all these places, even, occasionally, that he has the facts. Shall Trento really be called a hamlet? Is Triora really "perched above the sea"? (I distinctly recall its being a 10-mile drive inland.) Shouldn't Lazzarin admit that the Cinque Terre's hill paths are terminally overrun by vapid Rick Steves tourists? And there's an overall lack of sophistication: Siena's Piazza del Campo, Lazzarin confides, "was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995." Believe me, gentle reader, the designation is irrelevant to Siena, that living masterpiece. Its sole value is to validate the pack of overpaid, underworked artsy UN bureaucrats who awarded it. (And still one wonders: 1995? What on earth took them so long?)

Still, still--you could do worse. Lazzarin has found his way to plenty of places most Americans have never heard of or have merely passed by: Triora, Ortona (no T, no C; just plain Ortona), Cividale, Sondrio, Anagni and others, and with this book in your lap and some wine at hand, you'll have a good enough time visiting them, and perhaps be inspired to check ticket prices online. If that should happen, then your next step is to get some of the Cadogan Guides to Italy and to Italian regions; they are written by Dana Facaros and Michael Pauls, and they are much the best I've run into. Lucky you: They're all available fromn Amazon, too.--Bill Marsano is a professional writer and editor who has won several awards for his articles. He visits Italy several times a year.
19 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Beautiful Book 19 Oct 2005
By A. K. McGhee - Published on
A very Beautiful book that was a gift to a friend who loves Italy. The detailed, colorful pictures are a pleasure for the eyes. Highly recommend.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ahhhh, Italy!!! 27 April 2012
By margaret - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a lovely book containing all of my favorite towns in many more that I can't wait to see!!! I bought this book as a gift for a friend, but after seeing this book, I need to have a copy for myself!!!

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cultural Abundance 21 April 2009
By I. Kadagidze - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
"101 Beautiful Small Towns of Italy" is not a guide book in the strict sense of the word. It is a wonderful coffee table book you should always keep there in order to browse through and get pleasure from the beautiful photos of all those beautiful towns. It is divided according to historical regions of Northern, Central and Southern Italy, as well as the islands. It gives you a host of the facts about the history and culture of the towns. And their histories are so entertwined, you get the history of Italy in miniature.
But the book also gives such extensive information about what to see in these towns and around them, what and where to eat, where and what to shop for,as well as a lot of advice about places to stay, that you really can use it as a guide book.
Highly recommended for everybody who enjoys travelling and beautiful photography.
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