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Abandoned by Booklikes

Government drone by day and book lover and geek girl by night!

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Every Day in Tuscany

Every Day in Tuscany: Seasons of an Italian Life - Frances Mayes


Well, this was disappointing. I haven't read it in years, and am now recalling why I haven't. I really loved Under the Tuscan Sun and this one was painful to get through. I kept falling asleep. Mayes makes the decision to write rambling passages in this one and includes poetry and her musings on random things when she is supposed to be telling you about the days she spends in Tuscany starting in the Spring through the Summer. 


It's been 20 years since Mayes and her husband Ed bought a house in Tuscany. They are now part of the town and have made friends. And though Mayes and Ed love returning to Italy every year, Bramasole is showing it's age. And  the world is changing now too (it's 1998 when this was published) with Mayes and her husband feeling the sting of the dropping dollar and having feelings about Bush in Iraq.


The book is supposed to be following Mayes through the months in Tuscany, but honestly I couldn't get a handle on anything or anyone. Mayes jumps around a lot. She mentions people and then re-introduces them repeatedly through the book. The only thing she seems to do is drink wine, eat, and ramble around the mountainside. The first book got me because we had her discovering Italy and her home. We got to read about the renovations and how thoughtless some people were that were all cool we will come and visit you. The book flowed wonderfully. This one does not. At times I was so confused by what Mayes was saying and what she meant. I don't think it's that hard to tell a story from point A to point B, but this one couldn't do it.


The setting of Tuscany feels darker in this one too. Tuscany is changing with people wanting to modernize near them (a community pool is proposed to go in nearby Mayes and others homes) and with Mayes and her husband trying to get a petition going against it, Mayes realizes how she still doesn't understand Italy as much as she thought she did. With her and her husband being targeted it causes her to compare Italy to America and I have no idea where she was going with this. This is the only part of the book that felt coherent to me.You can feel Mayes outrage and her shock she was not beloved by everyone like she thought. Her writing a rebuttal to a man who wrote one about her and her refusing to acknowledge him when she saw him around town lets you see that she thinks she's really hurting the guy. 


The only parts I really liked were the recipes. I am interested in trying some of them out.

The book ends with Mayes and her husband deciding to not change their home because it will lose it's heart. Even though they admit they just don't have the money for it due to their investments losing money every day.