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64 Reviews
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unusual book about Venice - written from a (short-term) resident's viewpoint
I really enjoyed this book. It's well written, amusing at times and conjures up an excellent picture of what it is like to live in Venice. The author describes the fishbowl feeling of being photographed whenever she went out, of not being accepted by true Venetians, and feeling 'neither flesh nor fowl'. She also felt alien from the numerous Eastern Europeans who go to...
Published 13 months ago by The Cats' Mother

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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Venice experienced.
This book takes you to live in Venice for a year with Polly and her family. I was looking forward to getting to know the various members of the family and hearing their thoughts on the experience. However, the book is surprisingly light on the motives for the move and we are only given brief glimpses into the children's lives and thoughts. Alberto the husband is almost...
Published 14 months ago by Jenny Shaw-Browne


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unusual book about Venice - written from a (short-term) resident's viewpoint, 25 Sep 2013
By 
The Cats' Mother (Hampshire, England) - See all my reviews
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I really enjoyed this book. It's well written, amusing at times and conjures up an excellent picture of what it is like to live in Venice. The author describes the fishbowl feeling of being photographed whenever she went out, of not being accepted by true Venetians, and feeling 'neither flesh nor fowl'. She also felt alien from the numerous Eastern Europeans who go to Venice to work (or beg). The day to day difficulties of living in a city which is a museum, where there are no cars and getting from one part of the city to another takes forever are well described, and the effect it had on her children is interesting. She talks very little about her (Italian) husband, so how much help he was in adjusting to life in Venice is indeterminate. Don't get me wrong, though, there were definitely parts of life there that she absolutely loved, but I get the feeling that leaving was not too much of a wrench after a year. Overall, a very readable and informative book. I shan't look at Venetians in their home city in quite the same light in the future.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars eseential reading, 23 May 2013
This review is from: The Politics of Washing: Real Life in Venice (Paperback)
Don't even think about visiting Venice without reading this book. Polly Coles offers a thoroughly readable and highly intelligent collage of reflections and sketches providing a series of satisfyingly well-informed insights into the arcane and baffling ways of the endangered world of Venice. I loved reading this warm, wise and refreshingly honest book: I felt I was there in Venice with Polly, and I thoroughly enjoyed her company.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Venice experienced., 7 Aug 2013
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This book takes you to live in Venice for a year with Polly and her family. I was looking forward to getting to know the various members of the family and hearing their thoughts on the experience. However, the book is surprisingly light on the motives for the move and we are only given brief glimpses into the children's lives and thoughts. Alberto the husband is almost never mentioned we never get to hear about his motivation or participation in the day to day family life. There is a great deal of discussion on modern Venice versus past Venice. Venetian versus tourist. However, the book lacks the human intimate touch which its title promises.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the real Venice, 27 Sep 2014
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Unlike many travel books I have read recently, this book was written well, had plenty of colourful description which fleshed out the book. Venice came to life but in a new way. I have visited Venice as a tourist, like millions before me, but this book focused on what it means to be a Venetian, about the conflict of being one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world with sustaining Venice as a living, breathing community. I enjoyed it for its thoughtfulness.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book. As we visit Venice we could identify ..., 14 July 2014
This review is from: The Politics of Washing: Real Life in Venice (Paperback)
Brilliant book. As we visit Venice we could identify with the author's experience
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, 5 July 2014
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J. Rushbrooke (Cheshire UK) - See all my reviews
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Interesting, I learnt a lot about the real Venice
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars very good, 28 Jun 2014
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As an Italian living in the UK I can appreciate the problems involved with adapting to living in another country. Very interesting and lively book which describes very well the italian culture.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating read, 10 Jun 2014
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Mary-louise Walker "Teri Louise" (Somerset England) - See all my reviews
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Read this book shortly after a visit to Venice and it provided a fascinating insight into daily life in the city and also some of the clear problems that the resident population are facing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great look behind the face of " La Serenissima", 21 May 2014
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Loved this book about Venice! I love Venice and have visited three times but this made me think about the people who live ( or cannot afford to live) there. I had no idea that the real Venetians were being pushed out of their city!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Venice, 15 May 2014
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Nice insight into life in Venice and how people manage to live, and a resort out of season.A very good read
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The Politics of Washing: Real Life in Venice
The Politics of Washing: Real Life in Venice by Polly Coles (Paperback - 29 Mar 2013)
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