In some ways the book is a standard travelogue. In following his lowly Series A team in their seasonal slog around Italy, Parks gets to visit all the famous sights and cities. What makes this journey so different and so interesting is that Parks is accompanied by vividly ordinary, honestly working-class, determinedly urban Italians and gets to share their Nick Hornbyish highs and lows. This in turn provides a credible, fresh and revealing insight into the Italian character. These fans do all the normal soccer-supporter things like fight, drink, despair, exult, rant and put each other in comas; but they also do more surprising things, like sing songs in praise of the murderous Liverpool fans of Heysel and give voice to racist feelings about their southern compatriots.
This may not sound like most people's image of southern loveliness. Indeed it isn't. But it is a much needed antidote to all that saccharine-sweet Under The Tuscan Sun stuff; and it also makes this book a splendid bedside companion to the Italian campaign in the next, or indeed any, World Cup. --Sean Thomas --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Never have been a football fan but thoroughly enjoyed reading this book.Published 1 month ago by H. R. Bennett
This book is so special because Tim Parks lived and breathed Hellas Verona for two seasons, and probably in what was the club's most significant period over the last 25 years. Read morePublished 3 months ago by MikeSituation
I rend the book the Italian neighbors before I read this one. The Italian neighbors is a brilliant and engaging book, but a season with Verona is not as good.Published 5 months ago by Simon Bork
After more than ten years, still the go-to book to feel what it's really like to support a team. No matter what.Published 14 months ago by Martyn C Knox
A good read, I would recommend it to any football fan, especially those who travel all over following their team.Published 14 months ago by MR J T JARVIE
This is the author's diary of following a chronically underachieving Italian football club, Hellas Verona, in its season in the top division in 2001. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Richard Newbold