Ciao, America!: An Italian Discovers the U.S.

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Crown/Archetype, Jun 18, 2002 - Travel - 272 pages
77 Reviews
In the wry but affectionate tradition of Bill Bryson, Ciao, America! is a delightful look at America through the eyes of a fiercely funny guest — one of Italy’s favorite authors who spent a year in Washington, D.C.

When Beppe Severgnini and his wife rented a creaky house in Georgetown they were determined to see if they could adapt to a full four seasons in a country obsessed with ice cubes, air-conditioning, recliner chairs, and, of all things, after-dinner cappuccinos. From their first encounters with cryptic rental listings to their back-to-Europe yard sale twelve months later, Beppe explores this foreign land with the self-described patience of a mildly inappropriate beachcomber, holding up a mirror to America’s signature manners and mores. Succumbing to his surroundings day by day, he and his wife find themselves developing a taste for Klondike bars and Samuel Adams beer, and even that most peculiar of American institutions -- the pancake house.

The realtor who waves a perfect bye-bye, the overzealous mattress salesman who bounces from bed to bed, and the plumber named Marx who deals in illegally powerful showerheads are just a few of the better-than-fiction characters the Severgninis encounter while foraging for clues to the real America. A trip to the computer store proves just as revealing as D.C.’s Fourth of July celebration, as do boisterous waiters angling for tips and no-parking signs crammed with a dozen lines of fine print.

By the end of his visit, Severgnini has come to grips with life in these United States -- and written a charming, laugh-out-loud tribute.


From the Hardcover edition.
 

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Review: Ciao, America!: An Italian Discovers the US

User Review  - Frank Inserra - Goodreads

Enjoyed this book enormously. Although some critics have lamented the author's fascination with the mundane dimension of American day-to-day and street life, that is really what enlivens the book and ... Read full review

Review: Ciao, America!: An Italian Discovers the US

User Review  - Jackie G - Goodreads

Laugh out loud funny in places. Always good to see how someone from another country sees America. Read full review

Contents

Title Page
July
August
October
November
December
February
Five Years Later
About the Author
Copyright

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About the author (2002)

Beppe Severgnini is a columnist for Italy’s Corriere della Sera and also writes for The Economist. A bestselling author in Italy, his books include Inglesi, a portrait of modern Britain. Severgnini lives with his wife in Crema, Italy.


From the Hardcover edition.

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