"Italy in Books" - December reviews

Thanks again for joining the "Italy in Books” reading challenge 2011!

Below you can find a list of all the book reviews submitted in December (via
this link). I am sure that everyone will find it useful to learn about new and interesting reading ideas - in fact, I suspect that as a result of this challenge my TBR list will expand dangerously!

Whether you know the books that are being discussed or have never heard of them, I strongly encourage you to leave comments below and on the blogs themselves. I want to hear your voices! Despite its name, the reading challenge is not a mere competition, rather an opportunity to share ideas and bond over common interests!

Let's begin!

01. Juliet read and reviewed Galileo's Daughter by Dava Sobel.

02. Lindy read and reviewed The Blue Demon by David Hewson.
03. Juliet read and reviewed Miss Garnet's Angel by Salley Vickers.
04. Gretchen read and reviewed Livia, Empress of Rome by Matthew Dennison.
05. Laura read and reviewed Juliet by Anne Fortier.
06. Lara read and reviewed Il silenzio dell'onda by Gianrico Carofiglio:
Roberto Marias, the protagonist of “Il silenzio dell’onda”, the last Gianrico Carofiglio’s book, has been working for years as carabineer, involved in complex investigations, mainly about drug trafficking. Then something happens: he attempts to suicide and is suspended from work. Roberto now lives a depressing existence, where the only diversions are two psychoanalytic sessions per week. He uses to walk to the psychoanalyst’s, exploring the streets of Roma, enjoying its smell, its noises, while thinking about his condition. He regrets his youth: he lived in California and the only big challenge at that time was surfing the waves with his father. He has learnt how to recognize the movements, colours, noise and silence of the waves.Roberto does not have friends or relatives: occasionally, some colleagues call him asking how things are going. One day, before a session, he meets a woman, Emma, another psychoanalyst’s patient. She used to be an actress, but no one, today, is even remembering her career. She too, tries to give a sense to her existence; as a mother, she feels herself responsible towards her son, Giacomo. Giacomo is still a teenager, although much more mature than his age: he is growing without his father; in his dreams he often meets a dog, Scott, his guide in his daily struggles.Roberto and Emma become friends: probably this is due to their loneliness as well to the sadness that characterizes their lives. When Giacomo experiences some problems at school (a girlfriend of him is victim of a blackmail), Roberto, called by Emma, will be able to rescue the girl and will gain Giacomo’s confidence as well as more self-confidence.Gianrico Carofiglio forgets, in this book, his well known character, Guido Guerrieri, to build a story where action is replaced by psychological implications. Bari is not the usual scene, but Roma and its small places, public gardens, long crowded streets. We assist to a sort of catharsis of the main characters: they try to put aside shadows in their lives and to see the future in a different perspective. Roberto, at the end, will succeed in this pathway, even establishing, at the same time, a frank and more sincere relationship with his psychoanalyst.Although this is not the best book by Carofiglio, I would suggest to read it, on one hand, to appreciate the smooth and fluent author’s writing and, on the other hand, to start looking forward to Guido Guerrieri’s new investigations!

And remember: this month, courtesy of
Peirene Press, one of you will have the chance to win a copy of Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman by Friedrich Christian Delius.


  1. It has been a great challenge and I have enjoyed participating, thanks for organising.

  2. Thank you, Lindy! I enjoyed reading all your reviews too!

  3. I agree with Lindy, I enjoyed the challenge, that helped me to see my country as element of a story. I am looking forward to the new challenge 2012. Thanks Brighton Blogger :-) !!!


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