A Thousand Days in Venice is the first novel I’ve read by Marlena de Blasi. In fact it was even given to me as a gift. However, I was hooked immediately by her use of eloquent prose, vivid imagery, and, of course, Venice itself. Never having been to Italy, de Blasi brings the unique city to life as she begins a new version of her life with the Venetian man she calls ‘the stranger’.
Even if the romance de Blasi falls into isn’t your cup of tea — or glass of wine, I should say; this is Italy after all — you will fall in love with her immersive take on a new life unfamiliar to the one she has known in the United States. After all, self-discovery (or re-discovery) is at the heart of travel: abroad, she reaffirms her identity, this time in relation to the stranger.
At the same time, the reader is treated to a trip to a city unlike the modern one most of us live in today. Somehow Venice has preserved its history, tradition and culture. De Blasio writes that Venetian culture can be somewhat insular, but nonetheless makes friends and finds her place there. Plus, there is a Venetian wedding!
Yet perhaps the greatest romance de Blasi portrays in the novel is her love affair with food. She describes feasts of meals prepared in a multitude of settings, and explains that she uses preparing food as a way to share her love with the people in her life. Fortunately, she provides recipes as well, so the reader can replicate the best meals she prepares for her characters.
Buy the book here: Amazon