Wednesday, October 17, 2007
This is another book club pick. Set in World War II era Italy, the book centers around Captain James Gould a British Officer assigned the duty of making sure that British solders did not marry Italian women of "poor reputation", specifically prostitutes. However wartime shortages and extreme poverty ensure that almost all of them have slept with a solider for cash and he approves almost no marriages. He also attempts to crackdown on the black market with little or no success. Then Livia Pertini, a widow from the Italian countryside becomes the cook for Gould and the other officers. Gradually Gould begins to fall in love with her, the food she cooks, and Italy itself and see the world as more than black and white. The story takes a few turns towards the far fetched, but the book was still a worthwhile read.