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Ciao Bella: In Search of My Italian Father

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Out of the blue, at the age of 12, Helena Frith Powell's mother gave her a letter saying that her real father would like to get in touch with her and that he was Italian. She met him shortly afterwards and was mesmerised by him and his many girlfriends. Now 20 years later she goes back to discover her Italian roots.


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Out of the blue, at the age of 12, Helena Frith Powell's mother gave her a letter saying that her real father would like to get in touch with her and that he was Italian. She met him shortly afterwards and was mesmerised by him and his many girlfriends. Now 20 years later she goes back to discover her Italian roots.

30 review for Ciao Bella: In Search of My Italian Father

  1. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    In the realm of reinvent-yourself travel literature, Ciao Bella stands alone, unique in that the author is not trying to become something new: she discovers she’s been something else all along and needs to reckon that truth. And while characters who jump of the page are somewhat rare in travel lit– the destination usually plays lead– this book is populated with larger than life Italians who do just that. First traveling to Italy and meeting her Italian father when she is fourteen, Helena finds t In the realm of reinvent-yourself travel literature, Ciao Bella stands alone, unique in that the author is not trying to become something new: she discovers she’s been something else all along and needs to reckon that truth. And while characters who jump of the page are somewhat rare in travel lit– the destination usually plays lead– this book is populated with larger than life Italians who do just that. First traveling to Italy and meeting her Italian father when she is fourteen, Helena finds that she might be more Italian thank she ever imagined, not that this is an easy truth. Her father is a difficult man and their relationship remains unfulfilled until long after she returns to Italy years later, by now a mother and a French expat. More than travel lit, this is a great work about complicated families, tumultuous relationships, multinational identities, growing up, redemption, and finding out who you really are. See http://booksforherreviews.com/2014/08...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marie Bouteille

    Helena Frith Powell didn't know her father until she was fourteen. She decided to spend some time in Italy to get acquainted with her father, and by understanding him understanding herself. She's funny and this is an easy read. But I am uneasy with generalizations, about Italian women, about French women (I must have felt offended because I certainly don't think laughing is vulgar and I don't care about my appearance and know a lot of French women who don't either :)) and I always find them a bi Helena Frith Powell didn't know her father until she was fourteen. She decided to spend some time in Italy to get acquainted with her father, and by understanding him understanding herself. She's funny and this is an easy read. But I am uneasy with generalizations, about Italian women, about French women (I must have felt offended because I certainly don't think laughing is vulgar and I don't care about my appearance and know a lot of French women who don't either :)) and I always find them a bit cliché (but one may argue that it's because there's a little truth to them).

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tamela

    Read for my Italian summer trip; oh those Italians!

  4. 5 out of 5

    OxoNewbie

    I found this book self-indulgent. Though the father was obnoxious, I did feel some sympathy for him as he was denied his paternal rights. I think a book on the author's mother would be interesting as she clearly has issues.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tabbetha

    This was a really nice, if sad, book. The author has had an eventful life, and I am glad things seemed to work out well in the end. For anyone who is interested in family dynamics in Italy, this is a good book to read.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Fazackerly Toast

    a pleasant quick read, like a holiday in Italy, although all her relatives sound absolutely vile!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Carole

    Wonderful book. Italy comes alive and the author and her family do, too. Loved it!

  8. 5 out of 5

    heidi

    Very entertaining read, reminds me of A Year In Provence.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Amy

  10. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne

  12. 4 out of 5

    Pauline

  13. 4 out of 5

    Caroline Petkus

  14. 4 out of 5

    Eliza

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kristina

  16. 4 out of 5

    Laura Sky

  17. 5 out of 5

    Wendy Luke

  18. 5 out of 5

    Alia

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kate Dailey

  20. 4 out of 5

    Donna Padgett

  21. 4 out of 5

    BexD

  22. 4 out of 5

    Meera

  23. 4 out of 5

    Duna kal

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jason Heath

  25. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Nickel

  26. 4 out of 5

    Buka

  27. 4 out of 5

    Vanessa

  28. 5 out of 5

    Luisa

  29. 5 out of 5

    Valeria

  30. 5 out of 5

    Clare

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