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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » Every Day in Tuscany: Seasons of an Italian Life » User review


  • Mar 30, 2010
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Have you ever looked forward to a dinner, a party, an event with so much eager anticipation that the reality could not possibly match your expectations? That's descriptive of the situation I found myself in when awaiting the arrival of Frances Mayes's latest EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY.

I am a huge fan of Mayes's work, totally bewitched by UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN and others, so in all fairness it may be that nothing she wrote could possibly enchant me as much as her previous work. As always, her prose is poetic, beautifully wrought, and her powers of description undiminished. EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY is surely a pleasure, but for this reader simply not as exciting, as exhilarating as the others. Wonder if after almost two decades spent in Italy the subhject is not as intoxicating for her either. Mayes's narrative tends to be a bit rambling, disjointed reminiscences of time spent in Tuscany and environs. More introspective, at times very much a diary filled with random thoughts.

One would have to share her passion for tracking the works of the artist Luca Signorelli throughout Italy or find interesting her remembrance s of a Southern childhood. Having said all of that the narrative is, of course, pure unadulterated Mayes who often weaves a spell with words, allowing us to smell the bubbling tomato sauce, taste the "creamy and unctuous" hot chocolate, and experience Cortona where "the rhythms of the piazza are an ancient folk dance." So, indeed, there is much to enjoy in EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY.

In addition to meeting her exuberant friends, enjoying time spent with grandson Willie, and understanding her frustration with the boars who seem to constantly root gardens, we join Frances and Ed as they travel from Cortona to other towns, Orvieto, Arezzo, Positano, and more. I found myself making notes, underlining so as not to miss the restaurants and sights Mayes describes so temptingly when we return to Italy. Obviously, few of us can enjoy Italia as she does - with two homes to alternate between. But, as always, this author gives us many happy dreams.

Especially meaningful for this reader was one of the final sections re Rome. She noted, "Of the great cities, Rome has the biggest heart.' How true! And after young Willie saw the Trevi fountain, he closed his eyes and said, "I can't see any more. If I see any more, I will miss Rome too much." If there isn't another book coming from Frances Mayes, I would miss her too much.

Should this be your first Mayes book, you're in for a rare treat. If it's the third or fourth for you, it is still the singular Frances Mayes.


- Gail Cooke

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More Every Day in Tuscany: Seasons ... reviews
review by . April 23, 2010
Frances Mayes is long time friend of mine (in my head). No, I don't really know her personally, but feel a kindred spirit in many ways. Every Day in Tuscany is like catching up with a friend that I don't see very often. It's easy to fall back into Mayes' life in Italy, even after a few years from reading her last books. I like to imagine her southern drawl - a thoughtful pace, making her words relaxing, well chosen, and meaningful.     This time Mayes explores a new parcel of …
review by . April 01, 2010
It's been twenty years since Frances Mayes bought Bramasole near the Tuscan village of Cortona and fascinated readers and movigoers with her adventures in Under the Tuscan Sun. Now residing part of the year in North carolina and part of the year in her beloved Tuscany, Ms. Mayes and her poet husband take readers on a wandering adventure of life, love and food.    Every day in Tuscany is a lush tale of reacquainting oneself with good friends, happy jaunts and delicious cuisine, …
About the reviewer
Gail Cooke ()
Ranked #136
Member Since: Nov 1, 2008
Last Login: Aug 19, 2012 07:37 PM UTC
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About this book



Books, Travel, Tuscany, Italy, Frances Mayes


ISBN-10: 0767929829
ISBN-13: 978-0767929820
Author: Frances Mayes
Genre: Travel
Publisher: Broadway
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