Marcus of Umbria

I was recently chosen over at the Bright Side Project as the winner of two copies of "Marcus of Umbria: What an Italian Dog Taught an American Girl About Love" by Justine Van der Leun. One of those copies I have gifted and the other copy I sat down to read. I think I finished it in three sittings and would have finished it in one except that life called me away. It does that far too often, especially when something this wonderful falls into my hands.

Having won a few marvelous giveaways online, I would have had a tough time picking my favorite. Until now. Justine takes her time in Italy (and what lead her there) and weaves it into a living, breathing story of learning, growing and understanding. She shares culture-shock experiences and the conclusions she comes to because of them with humor and simplicity. Not drama, no shock & awe, no suspenseful anguish as to what happens next. Things just are and you're certain you're there with her.

The book is a sweet read, a gentle read. There isn't anything graphic in the book and honestly? It is a well-told story. A somewhat familiar story in her reasons for leaving her life here in America - but I'm not going to tell you too much about the book itself. You need to pick up a copy and read it for yourself. She writes that well and I have no desire to butcher her beauty.

As mentioned before, I felt like I was with her. I felt her panic the day of the barn robbery, enjoyed sneaking into the woods to pick mushrooms, and could almost smell Serenella's cooking (I got a bit huffy at Fabio over the wallet, too, Justine)... It is a beautiful look into the Italian countryside and its people. It's also a book of courage - of ditching everything you know to put yourself in a place wholly unfamiliar and then not only making a life but seeing what others can't and loving it unconditionally.

If you get the chance, read the book and thank you, Justine, for picking me as your winner. It was, by far, the best book I have read in a very long time.

Daily Drop Cap by Jessica Hische


HeathahLee said...

Bonnie, how did you find out about that? I tried to put it in my "followed" blogs but it says it doesn't have a feed to it. ???

I'd love to get updates from them!

Bonnie said...

If you scroll down below the yellow winners box on the home page, Heather, they have a subscription box. You can get email updates or feed. I just check them every day - it's what I do on my morning break. I'm a bit pathetic. lol