Top books recommendations for Italy

Imperium by Robert Harris

Imperium is a fictional biography and the first novel in a Trilogy about the famous Roman statesman, orator and philosopher Marcus Tullius Cicero.  The story is told through the eyes of his freedman and secretary Tiro.

SPQR by Mary Beard

A fresh look on the Ancient Rome by the prominent classical historian Mary Beard.  The book covers the first 1000 years of  Roman history, from its establishment and development as a city to the expansion into empire. Alongside big events such as Julius Caesar assassination, the book offers a lot of personal details about the residents of the empire.

The House of Medici: It’s Rise and Fall by Christopher Hibbert

Easy to read history of Florence’s most famous dynasty; the Medicis. The members included bankers, politicians,, patrons of the arts and humanities, four popes and two queens of France. Understanding Medici is a great introduction to understanding the political, economic and cultural history of Florence.

Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Maye

A 1996 memoir of Frances Mayes, an American University professor and writer. While visiting Italy, she decides to buy and renovate an abandoned villa in Tuscan town of Cortona. The book has been number one on New York Times Bestseller for 2 year and a film adaptation which was loosely based on the book was released in 2003.

The Land Where Lemons Grow by Helena Attlee

Helena Attlee takes readers on a citrus journey through Italy. The  book is a perfect combination of food, history and travel and explains why citrus fruits hold such a special place in Italian culture.

Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

A bestseller travel memoir by American author Elizabeth Gilbert, who after her divorce and unsuccessful rebound relationship decides to spend a year traveling in Italy, India and Indonesia.

Extra Virgin by Annie Hawes

In 1983 sisters Annie and Lucy Hawes from England decide to go for a 10-week working holidays in Italy. They end up buying a charming but rundown cottage in the Italian province of Liguria. The book describes the first years of their new life.

Four Seasons in Rome: On Twins, Insomnia, and the Biggest Funeral in the History of the World by Anthony Doerr

As a part of an award, American writer Anthony Doerr received an all expense paid opportunity to live and write in Rome for a year.  Four Seasons in Rome is his memoir of the time he spent there with his wife and newborn twins.

The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith

A 1955 psychological thriller novel. Tom Ripley, a twenty-year-old New Yorker is approached by a wealthy businessman Howard Greenleaf who wants him to travel to Europe and convince his son Dickie to return to the U.S. Tom finds Dickie in a picturesque Italian town and gains his trust and friendship. Envious of Dickie’s carless and luxurious lifestyle, Tom develops a plot to kill him and assume his identity.

Angels And Demons by Dan Brown

A 2000 bestselling mystery-thriller novel.  Following the murder of a physicist, Harvard University professor and symbologist  Robert Langdon, travels to Vatican in order to prevent  an ancient brotherhood known as the Illuminati, from committing terrorist act against the Roman Catholic Church. Not historically accurate, but a very engaging page turner, set in Rome.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.