I thoroughly enjoyed this book, but will say two things...I had already read the author's previous book, Italian Neighbours..in which he and his italian wife buy a flat in a village, and come up against/ make friends with a cast of characters who I instantly I fell in love with. And right at the beginning of this book he talks about childhood experiences of visiting the seaside in Blackpool, which happens to be my home town; so as far as I am concerned Tim Parks can do no wrong...!
In this volume the Parks family starts to expand and the author encounters some interesting cultural differences between his British upbringing, and the Italian approach to child-rearing. He learns about the school system,the function of grandparents in Italy,the importance of 'la Mamma'..... and sees how his own children are becoming thoroughly Italian..
For a few hours at least I immersed myself in all things italian..a great antidote to the rain outside my english window..