Book Review: Italy From the Inside

Italy From the Inside: The Definitive Guide for Travelers is an ebook written by Francesca and Paolo Tosolini. The couple  are Italians who have settled in the pacific northwest of the United States. Because they are from Italy, the authors understand Italian culture. This knowledge makes the book a very useful not just to travelers, but to those of us who will be hanging around Italy for a few years.

Topics Covered by Italy From the Inside

This book covers a lot. There are chapters on banks/currency, telephones, hotels, the post office, and of course shopping.

The authors guide you through riding buses, trains, ferries and even driving.  If you have never ridden buses or trains, the “how-to” directions are wonderful. It took me months to get brave enough to try public transportation!

One of the things I never knew before coming to Italy was that you better have on a plastic glove to handle the fruit in a grocery store. Shopping in a grocery store and other types of stores is covered, as well. This is especially important if you live on the economy and plan to use your local store.

A ton of other helpful information is included!

General Observations

There are so many times in the process of moving to Italy that you don’t know what you need to know. The Tosolinis have given an awesome overview of what you need to know to survive day-to-day life. There is a good table of contents that makes all the information easy to find.

This book is in a downloadable PDF format, so you can read the book on your computer, tablet or e-reader. It is a bit awkward to read on my kindle, but the information makes it worthwhile to put up with the navigation issues. There are a few small typos I noticed here and there. Again, the information was useful enough that I could easily overlook them.

My Favorite Quote from Italy from the Inside

I loved the first few lines of Chapter 2-Driving in Italy. “You may have heard (or perhaps even seen for yourself) how crazy Italians are behind the wheel. Well the truth is…That’s true! Most Italians are very reckless and arrogant when they drive. The driving law is probably the least respected law in Italy.”

I’m not Italian, so I’d never actually have the nerve to speak such words. However, since the Tosolinis are Italian, it is their right. On some days, in some places, truer words have not been spoken. Driving scared me. It still scares me sometimes. However, their tips will make it less painful to get used to the traffic here!

Final Word

Having this book is like getting good advice from an Italian friend before you travel. It is down-to-earth and so helpful. Get it while you are waiting to PCS and feel a bit nervous. Some of the information will soak in and when you do arrive in Italy, things will not feel so foriegn. For people who are not familiar with Italy,  I highly recommend you read Italy from the Inside.


Check out Francesca and Paolo Tosolini’s Kindle Books:

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