Thursday, March 18, 2010

EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY: REVIEW AND BONUS GIVEAWAY ENTRIES

GIVEAWAY ENDED
EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY

BY FRANCES MAYES

ABOUT THE BOOK:

In this sequel to her New York Times bestsellers Under the Tuscan Sun and Bella Tuscany, the celebrated "bard of Tuscany" (New York Times) lyrically chronicles her continuing, two decades-long love affair with Tuscany's people, art, cuisine, and lifestyle.

Frances Mayes offers her readers a deeply personal memoir of her present-day life in Tuscany, encompassing both the changes she has experienced since Under the Tuscan Sun and Bella Tuscany appeared, and sensuous, evocative reflections on the timeless beauty and vivid pleasures of Italian life. Among the themes Mayes explores are how her experience of Tuscany dramatically expanded when she renovated and became a part-time resident of a 13th century house with a stone roof in the mountains above Cortona, how life in the mountains introduced her to a "wilder" side of Tuscany--and with it a lively engagement with Tuscany's mountain people....TO READ THE REST, GO TO THE INITIAL POST HERE

ABOUT THE AUTHOR (JUST IN CASE YOU MISSED IT INITIALLY):


FRANCES MAYES is the author of four books about Tuscany. The now-classic Under the Tuscan Sun–which was a New York Times bestseller for more than two and a half years and became a Touchstone movie starring Diane Lane. It was followed by Bella Tuscany and two illustrated books, In Tuscany and Bringing Tuscany Home. She is also the author of the novel, Swan, six books of poetry, and The Discovery of Poetry. Her books have been translated into more than twenty languages. In addition to her Tuscany memoirs, Under the Tuscan Sun and Bella Tuscany, Frances Mayes is the author of the travel memoir A Year in the World; the illustrated books In Tuscany and Bringing Tuscany Home; Swan, a novel; The Discovery of Poetry, a text for readers; and five books of poetry. She divides her time between homes in Italy and North Carolina. GO HERE TO READ THE INTERVIEW WITH FRANCE MAYES IF YOU MISSED IT.

REVIEW:

In EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY: Seasons of an Italian Life, Frances Mayes has written what I can only declare to be a combination of memoir, travel guide, and cookbook. She begins by pleasantly describing her arrival in Cortona for her annual stay. Some twenty years ago, when she first bought a Tuscan” fixer-upper” in the form of the dilapidated “Bramasole“, she was reordering her life after her divorce. She knew that Bramasole was THE place for her when she first saw it. Although much work has been done on Bramasole, it still needs many more improvements and repair work done. Although not perfect, the house is still charming and the place for her annual season in Tuscany. Now married to Ed, she admits that they were first drawn to the area for it culture, art, history, food, and all the beautiful things Tuscany offers, but wound up staying because of the people.

The town’s people cautiously welcomed her at first, and many of the most enjoyable parts of the book are the ones describing the friends she has made over time, and getting together over a casual meal with neighbors. The months they spend there are filled with many colorful characters in town, dinners with stories to tell, the kitchens of the area’s finest cooks, and traveling to neighboring areas.

Visiting with friends and telling about some of the best cooks in the region, if not the world, is where the recipes come in. Every chapter has recipes that coordinate with the topic of that chapter. So many amazingly delectable recipes fill the pages of this book. The “Respelle al Procini e Ricotta” which is Porcini and Ricotta Crepes, and the “Torta di Suisine con Mandorle” which is a Plum Tart, especially whet my appetite. Two most important food tips that Mayes gives are that the addition of olive oil to everything and especially to salad making it pure delight, and the other part of the secret to this good food is freshness with much of the local produce used.

Traveling the surrounding areas, visiting historic as well as local places of importance is also a huge part of the book. They travel to Mayes’ brilliantly described places like Rome and Florence. Also, there is much focus on the arts and in particular fascination with Luca Signorelli who was a painter during the Renaissance.

At the end of their stay, Frances and Ed return to their ‘home” in North Carolina for the winter but with the promise of another season in Italy, they know that EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY can be enjoyed over and over again for years to come. So if you take pleasure in reading about history, food, or travel--or all three, then EVERY DAY IN TUSCANY will be just the most delightfully, beautifully written book you have read in a long while.

GIVEAWAY

THANKS TO JULIE AND THE FINE PEOPLE
AT RANDOM HOUSE PUBLISHING,
I HAVE ONE COPY OF THIS AMAZING
BOOK TO GIVE AWAY. HERE IS WHAT
YOU NEED TO DO TO WIN!



--U.S. RESIDENTS ONLY
--NO P. O. BOXES
---INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS
IN CASE YOU WIN!
--ALL COMMENTS MUST BE SEPARATE TO
COUNT AS MORE THAN ONE!


HOW TO ENTER...
BONUS ENTRIES


+1 ENTRY: COMMENT ON WHAT YOU THOUGHT ABOUT THIS BOOK AFTER READING MY REVIEW AND WHY IT IS THE KIND OF BOOK YOU WOULD WANT TO READ

+1 MORE ENTRY: TWEET ABOUT THIS GIVEAWAY AS MANY TIMES AS YOU WOULD LIKE BUT YOU MUST COME BACK AND COMMENT ABOUT IT HERE EACH TIME FOR THEM TO COUNT BY LEAVING A LINK

+1 MORE ENTRY: SHARE ABOUT THIS GIVEAWAY ON FACEBOOK AS MANY TIMES AS YOU WOULD LIKE BUT YOU MUST COME BACK AND COMMENT ABOUT IT HERE EACH TIME FOR IT TO COUNT LEAVING A LINK

+1 MORE ENTRY: SINCE ITALY HAS GIVEN US SO MUCH GREAT FOOD, TELL ME ABOUT YOUR FAVORITE ITALIAN FOOD (I THINK THIS IS A COMMENT BECAUSE IT IS LUNCH TIME AND I AM HUNGRY :-) ...BUT AT LEAST YOU GET ANOTHER ENTRY

GIVEAWAY ENDS AT
6 PM, EST, MARCH 31

25 comments:

Pamela Keener said...

I love Italian food and since I really can't afford to travel extensively I love to read about other people experiences. I am going to add this to by buy list.
Love & Hugs,
Pam
pk4290@comcast.net

Pamela Keener said...

My favorite Italian dish is angel hair pasta topped with a multitude of vegetables. It is light airy and delicious & never the same dish twice as I use whatever I have.
Love & Hugs,
Pam
pk4290@comcast.net

bermudaonion said...

I'd love to read this book because it sounds wonderful. What more could you ask for - Italy, recipes and the South? milou2ster(at)gmail.com

bermudaonion said...

My favorite Italian food is pasta with arribbiata sauce. milou2ster(at)gmail.com

g.g. said...

My favorite Italian food is just about anything but if I have to name one, I think it is lasagna

anjamie4 AT gmail DOT com

g.g. said...

I loved Under the Tuscon Sun and this does appear to be a different kind of story what with recipes and traveling but I think since I adore Mayes writing that I would still like it

anjamie4 AT gmail DOT com

Wickdogg said...

My favorite Italian food is ravioli

wickdogg at gmaildot com

Wickdogg said...

I think most people have self-esteem issues so I would be interested in reading this one


wickdogg at gmaildot com

Colleen Turner said...

My favorite Italian food is eggplant parmisian. I think I could eat that for every meal!
Thanks,
Colleen
candc320@gmail.com

Colleen Turner said...

The one place I have ALWAYS wanted to go is Italy...if I can't go there this book seems like a perfect substitute!
Colleen
candc320@gmail.com

traveler said...

My favorite Italian food is bruschetta. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

This book would be an informative and wonderful book to enjoy with the recipes and insight about everything Italian. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Margie said...

I like most Italian foods...but my favorite is seafood spaghetti.
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Margie said...

Tuscany sounds like a charming place to live. I enjoy travel memoirs, and the Italian recipes would make this book even more interesting to me.
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Benita said...

After reading your review, I'd really love to read this book. What a wealth of info- I could gain, and Frances Mayes is a wonderfully poetic writer.


bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

Benita said...

I do adore Italian food, and we cook Italian food extensively. Olive oil, garlic and love!


bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

Pricilla said...

The best meal I ever ate in my life I ate in Rome. It was a roast chicken of all things. I don't know how they cooked it but I still remember that chicken 10 years later.
thank you
kaiminani at gmail dot com

Pricilla said...

I thoroughly enjoyed Under the Tuscan Sun so I am sure I would love this book
thank you
kaiminani at gmail dot com

holdenj said...

Well, there's lots of Italian food out there that I like, but I really love a good gelato!
JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

holdenj said...

It just sounds like a great story, her life in Tuscany, travels, the food.
JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

Linda Kish said...

Spaghetti and meat sauce.


lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Linda Kish said...

I would like to read it for the travel guide aspects since I know I will never actually get there myself.


lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Kristen said...

I would love to read the book for a variety of reasons. I love books with recipes in them. I have also read and thoroughly enjoyed Mayes' previous books so I need this one to complete the collection. ;-)

whitreidsmama at yahoo dot com

Kristen said...

My favorite Italian food is eggplant parmesan but I think that's only because my husband hates eggplant and I can only eat it in restaurants. If I'm cooking, a pasta dish with lemon, parm, and olive oil is my favorite.

whitreidsmama at yahoo dot com

Rebecca O said...

I loved your review, it made me reminiscent for her other books! I have read them, and cherish them. I would love to visit Italy one day, but until then, I will soak up the books!
bekki1820cb at gmail

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