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Library JournalVenetian architect, historian, and filmmaker Da Mosto (Francesco's Venice) successfully assembles a wonderfully entertaining and educational companion to the BBC television presentation of the same name. This sequel to his dramatic history of Venice encompasses the life, legend, and lore of the entire Italian peninsula. Da Mosto covers not only the popular cities and the evolution of their art, architecture, and engineering advances but also some less well known delights, e.g., Cremona and the Isle of Capri. Peppered with insightful memories of his childhood travels and family vacations, Da Mosto's book goes well beyond the usual historical facts found in cookie-cutter travel guides. He includes fascinating vignettes on topics such as the historical balance of power between the popes and emperors, ending his journey on the island of Sicily, where his mother's relatives have lived for generations. Da Mosto brings to life all the splendor and intrigue that define Italy as he travels along the ancient roads of independent civilizations that have endured everything from volcanoes to war and still managed to embrace progress and the beauty of body and soul. Parker reprises his photographic expertise with breathtaking color images of, e.g., the majestic snow-capped Italian Alps. Highly recommended for both public and academic libraries.
—Richard A. Dickey