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The Other Side of the Tiber: Reflections on Time in Italy

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3.71  ·  Rating Details  ·  45 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
A moving and illuminating memoir about a singular woman's relationship with a fascinating and complex country

A fresh, nuanced perspective on a profoundly perplexing country: this is what Wallis Wilde-Menozzi's unique, captivating narrative promises—and delivers.
The Other Side of the Tiber brings Italy to life in an entirely new way, treating the peninsula as a series of di
...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published April 8th 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published April 16th 2013)
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Mary Tacconi
May 15, 2013 Mary Tacconi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have been an ardent fan of Wallis Wilde Menozzi since reading her Mother Tongue, An American Life In Italy. Once again, in The Other Side of the Tiber, I am overwhelmed by the breadth of material the author tackled, explored, examined, reflected upon...as well as the remarkable insights she shares. Her thorough understanding of the too often extremely baffling nuances of Italian life and culture is profound and so well illustrated by numerous examples to which (as someone who has lived in Ita ...more
Ashley Bergman Carlin
Apr 09, 2014 Ashley Bergman Carlin rated it really liked it
This is a beautiful book about what it means to be a young woman alone in Rome. Wilde-Menozzi, after fleeing her marriage and a good job at Oxford University, spontaneously moves to Rome and rents a single room in a rowdy courtyard full of characters, some she describes in devastating detail. She has moved to focus on her goal of becoming a writer (something she obviously accomplishes).

This book is part-memoir, of course, but it's also a lovely introduction to Rome-- her vivid description will
...more
Claire
Sep 11, 2014 Claire rated it really liked it
I received The Other Side of the Tiber as part of a Goodreads giveaway.

The daughter of a political family in the American Midwest, Wallis Wilde-Menozzi arrived in Italy decades ago by way of Oxford and a failed first marriage. Since that time, she has made Italy her home, marrying an Italian man and raising a daughter. These are her thoughts on a range of subjects in Italy, including, art, food, architecture, social and political attitudes, and physical and cultural landscapes.

I found this a rea
...more
Mary Ellen
Wallis Wilde-Menotti arrived in Italy in the 1960s, a young American woman looking for a new start after a failed relationship. Years later, married to an Italian scientist and with an adult daughter, she wrote this combination of memoir and essay. It is not a book to read straight through quickly, but a book to savor slowly. Every page yields beautifully crafted sentences, thoughts worth reflective pause and writing worth appreciating. I was charmed both by her love for the people of her adopte ...more
Natalie
**I won this book in a Goodreads Giveaway. Thanks Goodreads!**

I’m conflicted about this book. I can totally see the beauty in the writing and the stories, but it just didn’t do anything for me personally. The entire time I was reading, I could admit that the sentences were beautifully formed and amazingly written, but I only understood about 60% of each line. It was almost too complicatedly written for a memoir/travel book. For me, travel books should make me exciting about the place it’s descri
...more
Daniel
Nov 24, 2014 Daniel rated it it was amazing
Possibly it is being in Rome for a three week stay, and reading "The Other Side of the Tiber", that made this book so personal and revealing. But I think it is more than that. I think there is a resonance of thought in the book that extends beyond Rome, to the American Midwest, and to an understanding of how people resolve their lives within a culture, whether that be a birth culture or an adopted community. Wallis Wilde-Menozzi provides insight into the Italian people and culture and answers ma ...more
Andrew McTammany
Jul 12, 2015 Andrew McTammany rated it liked it
This was a very thoughtful and reflective memoir about a Italy and what it means to be Italian told from the perspective of an American expat. The writing was beautiful, but at times a little too opaque. It made the final product somewhat unapproachable. I actually kind of liked this book, but it wasn't quite what I was expecting.
Jo Ann
Oct 24, 2013 Jo Ann rated it it was amazing
Shelves:
The Other Side of the Tiber is a subtle yet generous masterpiece. With a simple subject, a young American woman on her personal quest of self-discovery while living in Rome, the author opens up the foundations on which our civilization is based, questioning constantly her discoveries so that she includes the reader in each step of the way. Intelligent, but modest, Wallis Wilde-Menozzi allows readers, at their own pace, to advance from one part of the mosaic to another, offering photographs as pr ...more
John Benson
This memoir of time in Italy included no maps of the country (a pet peeve of mine) yet I found it probably didn't need one. It was more a series of meditations on aspects of a life time in Italy, often concentrating on its art and long history. Some parts were very good, at others, I felt my mind wandering
Betty Dickie
Endless run on sentences and inside jokes and stories made what could have been an interesting book into a rather tedious one. There were moments when the information was really interesting or at least new. But it just didn't catch me. Only finished it because it was a review book.
Susan
Aug 24, 2015 Susan rated it really liked it
Shelves: italy
Almost any memoir that is set in Italy or in the city of Paris will hold my interest, and this one
is especially good in portraying the amazing
culture and complexity of modern Italy.
Kate Padilla
A little drudging at times, but an all-around experience on Italy, from its food to its history, art and culture.
Linda
May 25, 2015 Linda rated it it was amazing
With exquisite, lyrical prose, WW Menozzi conveys impressions of a lost and fascinating Rome.
Lynne Cosmano
very slow going for me in parts. Interesting book but it seemed disjointed to me
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There were seasons always—white and more white giving way to tender green and there were stories of different generations. I grew up in Wisconsin amid stability and quiet natural beauty. After graduating from the University of Michigan, I lived in Oxford, England, New York City, London, Rome, Palo Alto, California and finally, Parma, Italy. Willed or not, my Midwestern accent has never been replac ...more
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