Unsworth is a masterful writer, and his tale of English and American “foreigners” in Umbria is a humourous portrayal of the good life going bad. His cast of characters are longing to fit into the Italian countryside, to meld into the vineyards and the villas, the churches and the villages, but they are outwitted at every bend in the road. This ironic tale is a twist on the Bella Tuscany theme; a departure from Toujours Provence; and a reality check for those of us who think it would be so wonderful to set-up home in Italy’s beguiling countryside.
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