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Stolen Figs: And Other Adventures in Calabria Paperback – May 1, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
The author intersperses memories of growing up, recalling how his grandfather made wine in New Jersey, which he traded with a Portuguese farmer, who raised pigs ... his grandfather slaughtered the pig in the old-fashion way and provided the family with the same cuts of meat that the author saw on his visit to the village. The author includes memories and discussions with his father. One of which is the family story when his grandfather returned to the village to find himself a suitable wife. He married her in the village and took his bride to live in America. Since his grandmother and grandfather practiced old world ways, the author was able to trace many of the family traditons back to the village and culture of the region.Read more ›
The narration is repetitive and tedious with far too many typos in the text. Aside from factual errors regarding historical events (mentioned in other comments), the author mispelled several of the local dialect expressions which pepper the text. If you're going to use local idiom, please have enough respect to spell it correctly! For example, it's "culu" not "cullu" (trans: ass). And there are many more ... as in "Giallorosso" instead of "Giallorossa" (wtf!). And, if the author returned in July with family, how could he have witnessed a procession of screaming soccer fans following a tie match of the Catanzaro team? There is no Serie (A, B, C) soccer in July!!!!!! I guess it must have been a [pathetic] artistic license. Was this meant to be a novel or a documentary? It succeeded as neither.
When writing about Capo Colonna, he focused on the lone standing greek column (which is impressive enough); but how could he not highlight the fact that just a few feet away there are ruins of a roman villa and a byzantine church!? Within the space of an acre you can 'witness' layers of culture and history spanning 2500+ years!! Talk about an opportunity to illustrate the concept of a land at the center of [ancient and medieval] universal greed and aggression!
I am disappointed. It's like eating a cannolo made without sugar!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Beautifully written account of an American born man's visits to his ancestral homeland.Published 7 months ago by Roses
Although Mark, is what I consider a novice in writing, he put out his heart in this book. You can see the pride he has in his heritage and I, a fellow Calabrese, also have. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Linda Sposato
I bought this book for my wife, who had heard about it from a nun (!). My wife's parents and older siblings were all born in Calabria and came to Hartford, CT just around the start... Read morePublished on September 13, 2013 by Michael Aparo
I was somewhat disappointed in this book. I expected more exuberance, more heartfelt appreciation for a region of Italy that is truly wondrous and more than a little tricky to... Read morePublished on August 29, 2013 by M. Romano
The stories about southern Italy are excellent, I can almost see my grand parents living in the pages among the figs.Published on August 16, 2013 by Vincenzo
Book did not hold my attention. Wanted to find out more about Calabria but I couldn't finish the book. Not enough story.Published on April 12, 2013 by Thomas Gigliotti