Southern Italy Summer Reads

Are you the type of person that enjoys sitting out on the beach or by the pool with a good book? I love reading especially when I want to get away and escape the daily grind. There is something magical about certain books – they can take you anywhere in the world real or imaginary. And, if that place that you want to be in happens to be southern Italy, well then, these books may be just the right thing to get you there.

Here are some books set in southern Italy that you might enjoy:


That Summer in Puglia (Valeria Vescina)
This debut fiction novel, written by Valeria Vescina, is set in both London and Puglia, Ostuni to be exact. The main character, Tommaso, is sought out by a private investigator who wants to give him news of a large inheritance that has been left to him. Tommaso rejects the inheritance and pleads with the investigator to keep his whereabouts secret. So, what made Tommaso move to London, cut all ties with his past and take on a new identity? Tommaso shares his story, taking readers back to the 1980s and his last summer in Puglia, where he met and fell in love with Anna.


How To Bake a New Beginning (Lucy Knott)
Three sisters, each with very different personalities and lives but one common thread – something just isn’t right! Their lives become shaken up with the death of their grandfather and they being to rethink some things. They embark on a trip to Italy, to a small southern coastal town and begin to find their way through family, love, Italian culture, and of course cooking.


My Cousin The Saint(Justin Catanoso)
This book recounts the author, Justin Catanoso, and his search for his family history. Justin was born and raised in New Jersey and know very little about his Italian heritage. He discovers an interesting fact about his family when he learns that his grandfather’s cousin, Padre Gaetano Catanoso, is not only a miracle worker but also on the path to sainthood, making him the first priest from Calabria to ever be canonized. And so, Justin embarks on a journey to reconnect to his roots. You can read my full review of this book here!


The Stone Boudoir: Travels Through the Hidden Villages of Sicily(Theresa Maggio)
Theresa Maggio is a travel writer who has spent years travelling Sicily, the homeland of her grandparents, for years. But, instead of writing about the more well-known cities of Sicily, she has chosen to explore and share her experiences in the small villages in and around Mt.Etna and the Aeolian Islands. She is sure not to leave out her ancestry town of Santa Margherita, where she delves into her family tree and learns about the towns history.