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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Exploring Italy Through Literature: 30 Must-Read Books and Novels

Italy has long been a muse for writers from around the world. From the ancient ruins of Rome to the romantic canals of Venice, and the rolling hills of Tuscany to the vibrant streets of Naples, Italy offers a plethora of settings that have inspired countless stories.

Donatella Di Pietrantonio wins 2024 Strega Prize

With her concise, resonant, and deeply moving writing, Donatella Di Pietrantonio once again explores the brutal yet resilient forces at the core of every family.

Elena Ferrante

Elena Ferrante is the pseudonymous Italian author of several novels, most notably the Neapolitan Novels series. Her true identity remains unknown.

Oriana Fallaci

Oriana Fallaci (1929-2006) was a renowned Italian journalist, author, and interviewer, known for her provocative and often controversial writing style.

Travel Books and Guides

These guides cater to different travel styles and interests, whether you’re focused on art and history, culinary experiences, exploring cities, or discovering Italy’s scenic countryside.

Italian Literature & Fiction

Italian Literature and Fiction and current bestsellers

The Best Italian Books

From Dante to Ferrante, here's a list of the best Italian books for your library.


Tuscany, a region in central Italy, is renowned for its picturesque landscapes, rich history, and cultural heritage.


Venice's allure lies in its ability to transport visitors to a bygone era while remaining a living, breathing city that embraces both its historical significance and its modern vibrancy.

Italian Dictionares

Italian dictionaries have traversed a remarkable journey from medieval glossaries to sophisticated digital platforms, each phase contributing to the preservation, standardization, and enrichment of the Italian language.

Italian Language

Learning Italian is an investment in yourself, a gateway to new experiences and a deeper understanding of a captivating culture.

Italian History

Italy, the birthplace of Western civilization, possesses a rich and complex history that stretches back millennia.


The popularity of Italian cookbooks speaks to a universal desire for authenticity and comfort.

Children’s Books

Italian children's literature boasts a rich tapestry of stories, from timeless classics that have captivated generations to contemporary tales that reflect the modern world.

Bilingual Italian Books

Bilingual books are a fantastic resource for people who are learning Italian, or for parents who want to raise their children bilingually in Italian and English.

Art and Artists

Italian art is not merely a collection of paintings and sculptures; it is a vibrant tapestry woven from history, philosophy, and human emotion.

Maps of Italy

Maps of Italy have a long and fascinating history, reflecting the changing political landscape and geographical understanding of the peninsula over time.

Rick Steves Italy

Rick Steves is synonymous with budget-friendly, culturally immersive travel. His Italy expertise spans decades, offering a wealth of resources for independent explorers.

The Premio Strega: A Coveted Crown for Italian Literature

The Premio Strega, bathed in the allure of summer nights and brimming with the prestige of Italian literature, is an annual award that celebrates the finest novel written in Italian.

A Deep Dive into Fumetti: The Enduring Allure of Italian Comics

Italian comics, or "fumetti", are more than just illustrated stories.

A Simmering Stew: A Deep Dive into Italian American Literature

Italian American literature is more than just immigration narratives. It's a rich tapestry woven with threads of resilience, family loyalty, the power of community, and the bittersweet ache of nostalgia.

Beyond the Boot: A Journey Through Italian Women’s Literature

The next time you embark on a literary journey through Italy, take a moment to seek out these remarkable women writers.

When Words Move: Exploring Italian Literature Through Cinema

The Italian film industry has long drawn inspiration from beloved books, transforming them into moving pictures that have resonated with audiences worldwide.

A Tapestry of Voices: Italian Writers of the 19th Century

The 19th century in Italian literature was a period of immense creativity and exploration.

A Panoramic View of Italy’s 2024 Bestsellers: A Year of Diverse Delights

Italy's literary landscape in 2024 has been a vibrant tapestry woven with threads of social commentary, captivating fiction, and international intrigue. This year, both...

A Literary Symphony: The Rich Tapestry of 20th Century Italian Literature

The rich tapestry of 20th-century Italian literature offers endless opportunities for discovery.

A Literary Kaleidoscope: Unveiling the Rich Tapestry of 21st Century Italian Writers

Italy's literary scene in the 21st century is a dazzling kaleidoscope, with established authors like Ferrante and Saviano continuing to reign supreme.

Dante Alighieri

Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) was an Italian poet, writer, and philosopher best known for his epic poem "The Divine Comedy," which is widely considered one of the greatest works of world literature.

Andrea Camilleri

Andrea Camilleri (1925-2019) was a renowned Italian writer, best known for his detective novels featuring the character Inspector Salvo Montalbano.

Luigi Pirandello

Luigi Pirandello (1867–1936) was an influential Italian playwright, novelist, and short story writer, best known for his groundbreaking contributions to modern drama and literature.

Dacia Maraini

Dacia Maraini is an acclaimed Italian author, playwright, and essayist known for her significant contributions to contemporary literature and her focus on themes such as feminism, social justice, and human rights.

Elsa Morante

Elsa Morante (1912-1985) was an influential Italian novelist, short story writer, and poet. She is widely considered one of the most significant and original Italian writers of the 20th century.

Grazia Deledda

Grazia Deledda (1871-1936) was an Italian writer and the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1926. She is known for her vivid portrayals of life in Sardinia.

Alberto Moravia

Alberto Moravia (1907-1990) was an Italian novelist and journalist, one of the leading figures in 20th-century Italian literature.

Giovanni Verga

Giovanni Verga (1840-1922) was an Italian writer and playwright, widely regarded as one of the foremost representatives of the Verismo (Realism) literary movement in Italy.

Leonardo Sciascia

Leonardo Sciascia (1921-1989) was an Italian writer, journalist, and politician, known for his works that often explore themes of power, corruption, and the moral complexities within Italian society, particularly in his native Sicily.

Niccolò Ammaniti

Niccolò Ammaniti is a renowned Italian author and screenwriter, known for his evocative and often dark storytelling.

Alessandro Baricco

Alessandro Baricco is a renowned Italian writer, essayist, and music critic known for his unique literary style and exploration of contemporary themes.

Enzo Biagi

Enzo Biagi (1920–2007) was a prominent Italian journalist, writer, and television host, known for his incisive interviews and comprehensive reportage.

Giovanni Boccaccio

Giovanni Boccaccio (1313–1375) was an Italian writer, poet, correspondent of Petrarch, and an important Renaissance humanist.

Vitaliano Brancati

Vitaliano Brancati (1907-1954) was an Italian writer known for his satirical and often humorous exploration of Sicilian life, particularly focusing on the cultural and social aspects of mid-20th century Italy.

Aldo Busi

Aldo Busi is an Italian writer, translator, and television personality known for his provocative and often controversial works.

Dino Buzzati

Dino Buzzati remains a significant figure in Italian literature, known for his unique narrative style and profound thematic explorations.

Italo Calvino

Italo Calvino was an Italian writer renowned for his imaginative and innovative literary works.

Giosuè Carducci

Giosuè Carducci was an Italian poet, writer, and literary critic who is considered one of the most important figures in Italian literature of the 19th century.

Gabriele D’Annunzio

Gabriele D'Annunzio was a larger-than-life figure in Italian literature and history.

Umberto Eco

Umberto Eco was an Italian novelist, essayist, literary critic, and philosopher, renowned for his rich and intricate narratives, often infused with historical and philosophical themes.

Giorgio Faletti

Giorgio Faletti (25 November 1950 – 4 July 2014) was a multifaceted Italian artist known for his work as a writer, actor, comedian, and musician.

Beppe Fenoglio

Beppe Fenoglio (1922-1963) was an Italian writer known for his vivid depictions of rural life and the Italian Resistance during World War II.

Ennio Flaiano

Ennio Flaiano (1910-1972) was an influential Italian writer, screenwriter, playwright, and journalist, known for his sharp wit, incisive satire, and contributions to Italian cinema and literature.

Dario Fo

Dario Fo (1926-2016) was an Italian playwright, actor, director, and Nobel Prize laureate in Literature.

Ugo Foscolo

Foscolo's contributions to literature and his passionate engagement with the political and cultural issues of his time have cemented his place as a significant figure in the history of Italian letters.

Natalia Ginzburg

Natalia Ginzburg (1916–1991) was an influential Italian writer, known for her novels, short stories, and essays that often explore themes of family, love, and social and political issues.

Carlo Goldoni

Carlo Goldoni (1707–1793) was an influential Italian playwright and librettist from Venice. He is best known for his significant contributions to Italian theater, particularly in the realm of comedy.

Giacomo Leopardi

Giacomo Leopardi (1798-1837) was an Italian poet, philosopher, and essayist, widely regarded as one of the most significant figures in Italian literature.

Primo Levi

Primo Levi (1919-1987) was an Italian Jewish chemist, writer, and Holocaust survivor, best known for his poignant and reflective works on his experiences during World War II.

Niccolò Machiavelli

Niccolò Machiavelli (1469-1527) was an Italian diplomat, philosopher, and writer, best known for his political treatise, "The Prince" (Il Principe).

Alessandro Manzoni

Manzoni's work remains an essential part of the Italian literary canon, and his influence on the Italian language and national identity is profound.

Eugenio Montale

Eugenio Montale (1896–1981) was an influential Italian poet, writer, editor, and translator, often regarded as one of the greatest Italian poets of the 20th century.

Pier Paolo Pasolini

Pier Paolo Pasolini was an Italian film director, poet, writer, and intellectual whose work spanned various forms of media and artistic expression.