A Tuscan Childhood

Paperback / ISBN-13: 9781780228648

Price: £9.99

ON SALE: 9th April 2015

Genre: Humanities / History / Military History / First World War

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‘Wonderful … I fell immediately into her world’ Frances Mayes, author of Under the Tuscan Sun

Kinta Beevor was five years old when she fell in love with her parents’ castle facing the Carrara mountains.

She and her brother ran barefoot, exploring an enchanted world. They searched for wild mushrooms in the hills with Fiore the stonemason, and learned how to tickle trout. The freedom and beauty of life at the castle attracted poets, writers and painters, including D.H. Lawrence and Rex Whistler. The other side to Kinta’s childhood was very different, for it was spent with her formidable great aunt, Janet Ross, in a grand villa outside Florence. But soon the old way of life and Kinta’s idyllic world were threatened by war.

Nostalgic, yet unsentimental and funny, A TUSCAN CHILDHOOD is a book which transports the reader to bohemian, aristocratic Italy and the sound of bells from a distant campanile.


Kinta Beevor's distinctive contribution is in her detailed and unsentimental account of the peasant life of the time, its surrounding, its labours and its joys, and in her ability to convey the remembered happiness of a childhood spent in the freedom of two exceptionally beautiful houses amid some of the most delectable countryside in the world
Its unpretentiousness and authenticity, and above all the sincreity of the writer's affection for an Italy now long lost, make it an attractive and engaging read
A delightful memoir
A loving and intimate portrait of Tuscany's many faces; but it is in her feeling for the landscape that Beevor excels. One can hear the buzzing of the cicadas, smell the wild thyme and feel the crunching of pine needles underfoot
A beautifully written book
A paean to an idyllic upbringing. Beevor's masterful prose evokes time and place, scent and taste, humour and superstition, the yearly rhythms of rural life ... A delightful read - and likely to inspire many an Italian holiday
A delightful corrective to the sickly Chiantishire school of writing. The descriptions of the harvesting and preparation of food and wine by the locals could not be bettered and the pages are alive with vivid characters, from stonemasons and farm workers to foreign bohemians ... a joy