November Book Review

Italian Ways: On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo By Tim Parks

This month’s review is by Richard Bellikoff
Italian Ways: On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo By Tim Parks

Italian Ways: On and Off the Rails from Milan to Palermo By Tim Parks

I was hooked on this book from the moment I read its dedication: For all those who love to read on trains. Tim Parks actually does far more on trains than just read. He’s also a keen observer of his fellow passengers.

A transplanted Englishman, he has lived in Verona (the setting for Romeo and Juliet) for thirty years, but still feels at times like an outsider. Hence his voyage of discovery, riding Italy’s trains to create what turns out to be an insightful and entertaining portrait of the Italian people. Through encounters with Italians from all walks of life, Parks explores the charm, complexity and contradictions of the Italian character. His sharp eye detects details that most of us would overlook, and his ear for dialogue will improve your Italian vocabulary.

No longer will you be limited to ordering a venti latte macchiato or a doppio espresso at Starbuckís. Thereís no substitute for an actual train trip through Italy, but if youíre going to travel vicariously, Tim Parks is the perfect guide.

CALL # STATUS: 914.5 PARKS