(Sinclair- Stevenson, 1992), an account of life in an Italian village. Illustrations and jacket painting by Clive Birch


All right, I suppose it was an attempt to climb onto a bandwagon set in motion by A Year in Provence, but this account of our first two years living in an Italian village has the merit of being a real reflection of a way of life that still survives in a country where the landscape has not yet been tamed. And it's fun. And maybe it should go into "biographical details", because it's also true.



From the Observer:

"Mawer, in one of the wisest of recent books on his adoptive country, incisively combines astonished lyricism amid village moods and seasons, with a firm grasp on the nature of that stubborn permanence, that tranquil cussedness, with which Italy both embraces and shrugs off the questing foreigner."
Jonathan Keats


From the Times Literary Supplement:

"...an affectionate, unhurried account of how two foreigners fared in a village relatively unchanged by modern times... the good-humoured book that has come out of their time in Avea is an evocative reminder of how successful the Italians have been at hanging on to the pleasures of the passing seasons."
Caroline Moorehead






Jacket illustration from a painting by Clive Birch

Read an excerpt

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