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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Season to Remember!
A great book loosely based upon Verona's epic 2000-2001 Season in Serie A. The book is in diary form, so the author, like the reader, doesn't know the eventual outcome when he writes each chapter. This somehow adds to the excitement whilst reading it.
As well as Verona the book covers many asides in all sorts of areas such as Italian politics, hooliganism, life in...
Published on 28 July 2005 by R. P. Sedgwick

versus
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed
I was led to believe this would involve something of a travelogue as well as the football. But no, it's purely football, specifically Verona and their fans. It's not amusing, it focuses solely on the minutiae of Veronese football. In fact it's as dry and dead as an Italian lawn in high summer. The author's a decent writer, but this is tedious.
Published 10 months ago by R. Deasey


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For those who may not understand........., 22 April 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: A Season With Verona (Paperback)
This book is excellent. Most who buy it will have an interest in football but it is much more than this. My wife (hates football) read it after I did and she loved it too.
The author manages to describe that unique and mysterious hold football and more generally sport has on people. Why does he and his son get so immersed in supporting a non-descript and seemingly incapable football team? He fights against these powerful inner urgings and occasionally indulges them.
It is a beautiful explanation of how one of the simpler pastimes, still available to all regardless of social status, can allow us to escape from the mundaneness of it all.
"A Season with Verona" actually made me go lookup the teams website to see if these characters still exist and play !
It's a brilliant piece that captures and explains the "football thing" like no other book I've read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You'll be gripped from start to finish, 20 Oct 2002
By 
Jay M "jay_mc" (Dublin, Ireland) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Without doubt this is the best football book that I've ever read. Right from the start Tim Parks actually draws the reader into the unfolding drama and story, rather than it just being a case of you reading a book and just taking information in. You'll find yourself eagerly flicking pages to find out what happened next, sometimes I read this book deep (and I mean, deep!) into the early morning rather than put the book down.
Basically this book is all about Hellas Verona football club in Italy, and their battle to stay in the top division in Italy, Serie A. They are one of the most, if not the most, unfashionable clubs in Italy to support, due to the media's overblown coverage of the club's racism problems.
In this book you'll find out about many interesting fans and the sometimes hilarious, sometimes appalling, things they got upto throughout a tense season. It's a totally factual account and that makes this all the more intriguing. If you thought you knew everything about Italian football then take a read of this, you'll be surprised at what really goes on. You thought rivalry was bad in English football!
Not only did Verona have to battle the media and their reputation, but added to that was the fact that they did not have the resources of huge clubs like Inter Milan and Juventus.
Tim Parks wrote this book extremely well, never baffling the reader or losing the plot. It's very enjoyable and added to that you'll learn snippets of the Italian language and all about the Italian way of life.
A superb read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unputdownable - Every football supporter should read it., 15 Mar 2002
By A Customer
What a great book, it accurately describes the elation, pain angusih and heartache suffered by every true fan of every small team. Mixed with excellent descriptions of the various locations creating just the right atmosphere - even the songs are the same!. Very few travel based books have held my attention in the way this has- Tim Parks achieves this by maintaining an excellent balance between the neutral narrator and the rabid fan!
Excellent work!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enlightening, inspiring and funny, 6 Feb 2011
This review is from: A Season With Verona (Paperback)
Having never been to Italy I always thought of this country and its culture as something of an enigma. Tim Parks gets to the bottom of the enigma in this tribute to the now-fallen club Hellas Verona. Reading it ten years after it was written, it's as good as it ever was and brings back to life a turbulent and memorable era in world football.

I love how Tim Parks weaves other strands of Italian life into the book, and using some skilful language and grand metaphors he really conveys the personality of the city and its people, and of Italy's divisive nature. The liberal sprinklings of Italian really add authenticity to it, as do the changing league tables and the passionate/rabid internet fan quotes that bookend each chapter.

I found it a bit of a tough read in places but a wonderfully rewarding one. As a piece of writing it wonderfully conveys the matches, the tackles, the interminable away journeys, the raw emotion, the agony and the ecstasy of a season with the Brigate Gialloblu.

There are one or two minor factual errors (e.g. the labeling of Patrick Vieira as a striker) but don't let that ruin your enjoyment of what is an outstanding book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Old School Support, 17 Sep 2009
By 
H. Delaney "tictastic" (Glasgow, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: A Season With Verona (Paperback)
Reading this book brought back many memories of when I was a teenager and travelling far and wide supporting Celtic. Many of the real characters Tim Parks tells us of I could actually put faces too as memories of long coach trips and train journeys came flooding back. Any real football who remembers when we were able to stand and watch our team will enjoy this season long journey undertaken by the author.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Forza Gialloblu!, 29 Aug 2004
This review is from: A Season With Verona (Paperback)
Parks - an Englishman who has lived and worked in Italy for some 20 years - spends a year following his local football team: provincial alsorans, Hellas Verona. He travels the length and breadth of the country, attending every match of the 2000/01 season; a campaign which dissolves into a desperate struggle to maintain Serie A status. Set in the style of a match by match diary - the first few months are written from the perspective of an ordinary fan; but when the club get wind of the book, Parks is invited to spend time with the management and playing staff.
Reading as part travel, part soccer book - it offers a fascinating insight into Italian fan culture: the hierarchical power struggles within the 'Brigate Gialloblu' - the club's notorious followers; allegiances (strictly adhered) with a select few Serie A peers; and the equanimous acceptance of season end match fixing. The access granted to the squad enables a close observation of the rarefied atmosphere in which a professional football club operates: pampered but secluded players, concerned more with their own careers than of possible relegation; the morose and under pressure head coach, cutting an isolated figure when results go against him; the financial burdens of keeping an unfashionable club afloat amongst the top echelon. Italy's regional idiosyncrasies, stereotypes, and rivalries are also explored: the Veronese are regarded by outsiders as parochial, uncouth racists; indeed the Brigate initially treat an Englishman within their ranks, with a mixture of suspicion and bemusement. For extra flavour, the book is peppered throughout with Italian dialect, helping to bring the myriad of colourful and passionate characters encountered to life.
The author's obvious enthusiasm for his adopted club and country is both endearing and infectious; inevitably, it's all too easy to become engaged in his team's plight. Football fans everywhere will empathize with the agony and ecstasy, the nail-biting obsessiveness, Parks has to endure over the course of what turns into a dramatic season; and - with writers' serendipity - climaxes in the most thrilling denouement. A splendid read.
Forza Gialloblu!
Ronnie Pander
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous - Truly Engaging, 10 Mar 2003
This review is from: A Season With Verona (Paperback)
A Season With Verona--- Tim Parks has written yet another fantastic book. A Season immediately captured my attention and engulfed my life. He passionately describes this great game and offers the utmost respect to the game itself.
The stories within the story are impressive, passionate, and absolutely hilarious. The book offers true insight into the minds of players, coaches, and fans.
A reader can't help but become captivated within each game, even at times, thinking you are in the curva sud with the brigate gialloblu.
The book also offers great representations about Italian history (cities, players, politicians, etc.), culture, daily routines, food, politics, academics, and the financial operations of a club.
A must read for all.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars FANTASTICO!, 12 Aug 2002
By 
Paul Spicer (London, England) - See all my reviews
For those of us who love football, Tim Parks' story of his season following Serie A (now B), club side Hellas Verona is one that all fans of the beautiful game can relate to. Watching all the home games from his regular seat, and travelling the length and bredth of Italy to the away games with the Brigate, the press and the team!
You can only admire Parks' love for football, and we also get an insight into a country bubbling over with passion at subjects as diverse as football and religion, as well as learning of the age old rivalries between the cities and regions of Italy.
Scandals, racism, some classic 'one liners' from the Brigate,
if this book had been a work of fiction, then most of us would have belittled it as too outrageous!
When reading it, check out the Brigate's insults at the Juve fans in Turin! Priceless:
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellento, 10 Mar 2003
This review is from: A Season With Verona (Paperback)
A great idea for a book and this is a great and interesting read. Hellas Verona much like my team Norwich City, haven't really won much. Straight away I could relate to the book.
The amazing story of the club and it's fans gripped me throughout. Their friends and rivals in the Italian league is also pretty amazing and quite bizzare. I knew quite a bit about Italian Football before I read this book but this provides you with some great views on the Italian league that I haven't really come across before.
Tim Parks includes a great insight to the fans of Hellas Verona and the extermists within Brigate Gialloblu (Verona's hardcore fans). The story starts with a superbly written piece on a bus journey to Bari. The twists and turns on this journey alone is enough for a book!
The sad state of Hooliganism, Rascism and Fascism in Italian football is well explained and I think Parks restrains himself well not to get involved with the politics in these matters. The authorities clearly need to sort this out!
It took me less than a week to read (450pgs) so that shows it really is a gripping book and one I couldn't wait to get back to read.
One of the best books I've ever read and a 'must buy' for all passionate football fans!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Book, 19 May 2013
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This review is from: A Season With Verona (Paperback)
HELLAS in A again - Today 18 March 2013.
Great Book, very interesting and passionate. A true introspection of best italian ultras.
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A Season with Verona: Travels Around Italy in Search of Illusion, National Characters
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