Missing Italy, are we?

Old Apr 8th, 2021, 02:48 AM
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Missing Italy, are we?

So many plans overturned by the Plague.
One might read The Decameron, a bunch of nobles holed up in Fiesole.
Or if one pines for Venezia, try the novels by Philip Jones, set in Venice.
They will take you there, at least in spirit.
Start with “The Venetian Game”
You will be hooked.
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Old Apr 8th, 2021, 05:08 AM
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I find a 10 minute siciliano beach youtube along with "una pecora da giorno" every day sort of puts me straight
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Old Apr 8th, 2021, 06:56 AM
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I am not missing the imeptitude at all
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Old Apr 8th, 2021, 07:18 AM
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the ineptitude is part of the fun ;-)
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Old Apr 8th, 2021, 01:55 PM
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<<I am not missing the imeptitude at all>>

Dukey - the more I go to Italy the more I realise that its not ineptitude so much as a different set of priorities. And certain aspects of Italian life are very ept indeed, especially in the north.
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Old Apr 8th, 2021, 02:38 PM
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Thanks for the recommendation, Peter. I ordered The Venetian Game. Italy is my happy place.
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Old Apr 9th, 2021, 03:03 AM
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A writer in Venice, Phil Jones, says this:
I’ve always had a soft spot for the accidental hero. I realised many years ago that I was never going to be Sherlock Holmes let alone James Bond, and all I had in common with Philip Marlowe was my first name and a similar taste in headwear.

So when I began writing my series of Venice-based thrillers I knew that my protagonist, Nathan Sutherland, was not going to be a cop, a spy or a private eye. He’d just be a regular guy, an Englishman abroad, trying to do his best in extraordinary circumstances in an extraordinary city. He’s the British Honorary Consul in Venice, a position that, being effectively unpaid, is less glamorous than you might expect. And – in Nathan’s world – it’s also rather more dangerous than you might expect.

In previous novels he’s tackled art crime, the case of a missing manuscript by Claudio Monteverdi and an empty grave on the cemetery island of San Michele. In “The Venetian Legacy”, however, he finds himself confronted with the Mala del Brenta. The Venetian Mafia.

Yes, they really do exist. And the more I discovered about them, the more I realised that these are people who you really, really do not want to mess with. Most of the senior members are either dead or in prison. There are also some who are not. I chose, of course, not to mention them…

I also decided that, after four novels, it was time to move Nathan out of his comfort zone. Much of the action, this time, takes place on the island of Pellestrina, a thin strip of land perhaps ten kilometres in length that serves as a barrier between the Venetian lagoon and the Adriatic Sea. Populated by perhaps three thousand people, making their living from the sea, it’s a world away from the hustle and bustle of Venice itself. Away from his usual haunts in the centro storico, with a friendly face in every bar and cicheteria, Pellestrina was a place where Nathan really would feel like an outsider.

Oh, and I don’t think it’s a spoiler to say that I married off Nathan and Federica this time. I’ve never really liked the whole ‘will they – won’t they?’ thing, and decided that four books was quite long enough for Nathan to make his mind up. Besides, I’ve always admired Nick and Nora Charles from Hammett’s The Thin Man, a husband and wife team who fight crime with the aid of far too many cocktails. Gramsci, the stroppy Marxist cat is, of course, also along for the ride.

So Nathan and Fede find themselves on honeymoon on an island where the sunsets are magnificent, the seafood is the best in Venice and some very nasty family secrets are about to be uncovered. Pellestrina, as Dorothy L Sayers might have said, is going to be something of a busman’s honeymoon…
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Old Apr 11th, 2021, 04:23 PM
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I had to make a UK Amazon account including a fake address (that of the hotel we've been staying at when we are there) in order to get the Kindle version of his books since they are not available in the U. S. I haven't started on them yet, but you inspire me to get started!
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Old Apr 12th, 2021, 09:27 AM
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Book

Good idea!
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Old Apr 13th, 2021, 08:06 AM
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Phil jones

Sounds interesting (the novels).


Lynn
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Old Apr 13th, 2021, 10:25 AM
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<<Sounds interesting (the novels).>>

They are Lynn - and a very good read too. A real sense of place as well as great writing and plots, and after reading the latest one - now No 10 in the Times paperback list - I realise that there are some parts of the Venetian lagoon that I really need to go and see on my next visit.
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Old Apr 14th, 2021, 10:51 AM
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Venetian lagoon

Cool. The Venetian lagoon is in Venice?


Lynn


Originally Posted by annhig View Post
<<Sounds interesting (the novels).>>

They are Lynn - and a very good read too. A real sense of place as well as great writing and plots, and after reading the latest one - now No 10 in the Times paperback list - I realise that there are some parts of the Venetian lagoon that I really need to go and see on my next visit.
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Old Apr 14th, 2021, 11:11 AM
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I hadn't thought much about Le Marche but saw a video about the region and they showed the coastal fishing villages and Ascoli, which had beautiful architecture.

Guess it's not quite on the beaten path as other Italian regions.

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Old Apr 14th, 2021, 11:25 AM
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I've been to Le Marche twice--it's lovely. I also recommend Abruzzo.

ETA: But why are we talking Le Marche? I thought this was a Venice thread. In any case, my last trip to Italy, in summer 2019, I spent a week in Venice for the Biennale d'Arte and then moved on the the northern part of Le Marche. I like to pair a week as a culture-vulture in Venice with time in a more country/hiking-friendly setting. I have combined Venice (again, Biennale) with hiking in the Dolomites.

Last edited by Leely2; Apr 14th, 2021 at 11:29 AM.
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Old Apr 14th, 2021, 12:34 PM
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<<Cool. The Venetian lagoon is in Venice?>>

not quite, Lynn - Venice is in the Venetian lagoon. If you have a look at a map of Venice and its surroundings, you'll see what I mean.
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Old Apr 26th, 2021, 07:46 AM
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I am saving The Venetian Game to enjoy during some forthcoming time off, but my little aside is seeing Donna Leon and a friend walk by my canal-side cafe table in Cannaregio.

Another aside is that I finally made it to Le Marche to see Urbino, which I'd read about re: the Italian Renaissance; I highly recommend it if you are heading to Le Marche. BValenci is a Fodorite who knows the region well.
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Old Apr 26th, 2021, 11:07 AM
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annw, I may have askwed you this before, but when did you go to Le Marche? I had been to the southern part, closer to Abruzzo a few years ago, but visited the northern part, staying in Senigallia and Urbino, in 2019. Did we cross paths?


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Old Apr 26th, 2021, 12:17 PM
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LOVE that pic, Leely! I had to check emails and Tripit; a friend and I were in Urbino and San Marino in March/April 2018, after we had taken a mosaic course in Ravenna. We avoid driving in Europe when we can, so it was a bit of a schlep to get around in Le Marche without a car, but a lovely area and not over-run.
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Old Apr 27th, 2021, 12:56 PM
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<<Another aside is that I finally made it to Le Marche to see Urbino, which I'd read about re: the Italian Renaissance; I highly recommend it if you are heading to Le Marche. BValenci is a Fodorite who knows the region well.>>

In our italian class we spent part of last year studying Raphael whose death happened 501 years ago. As he was born there we spent quite a lot of time looking at Urbino and it's high on my list of places to visit but it'll have to wait a while longer I fear.

Leely, that's a lovely photo. Thanks for posting it.
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Old Apr 28th, 2021, 11:05 AM
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I am definitely suffering from "Italy withdrawal symptoms". Last went in October 2018 - had to cancel last years planned trip to Emilia Romagna.
I know the thread started about Venice - but I find Venice the most unitalian of anywhere I've visited in the country (admittedly I've not done Trieste or Bolzano).
The few Venetians I met gave me the impression that they wee Italian on sufferance.
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