As a nation state, Italy has emerged only in 1871. Until then the country was politically divided into a large number of independant cities, provinces and islands. The currently available evidences point out to a dominant Etruscan, Greek and Roman cultural influence on today's Italians.
With Christmas just around the corner, I wanted to let everyone know about a terrific gift idea for your favorite Italiaphile and/or Siciliaphile ~~
Dreaming of Sicily ~ A Travel Memoir is a book that I have written and published about my first trip to Sicily. The prime motivator for my first trip to Sicily was to visit Santa Elisabetta, a small town in the Province of Agrigento, where my paternal grandparents were born, raised and married before immigrating to America in the early 1900â€™s. I had no way of knowing if our family had a connection to this town anymore, or if, like my grandparents, all of our relatives had moved to other parts of the world.
I can happily report that I found several relatives â€“ my grandfatherâ€™s youngest sister, Nina, who was 92 years old when I met her, and my grandmotherâ€™s two nieces, both now in their 80â€™s, daughters of her youngest sister Liboria.
There are humorous travel tips will keep you laughing throughout the book, while poignant encounters with native Sicilians will prove that meeting everyday people in a foreign land is the most entertaining and authentic way to experience a country.
The book is illustrated with 39 evocative watercolor paintings by Kathleen Citrolo Gwinnett, a second generation Sicilian-American artist who has also traveled (and painted!) extensively throughout Sicily.
This book will have special meaning for Sicilian-Americans who are curious about their Sicilian roots, and perhaps spur them into visiting the beautiful island of their ancestors.
I hope you will visit my Dreaming of Sicily website and read some excerpts from the book, and if you like it, I hope you will buy a copy.