The Piazza: Stories from Piazza Santa Caterina Piccola

(Author) (Illustrator)
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Product Details
Topanga Moon Books
Publish Date
6.0 X 9.0 X 0.81 inches | 1.32 pounds

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About the Author
BOB BRUSH is an Emmy Award winning writer-composer and Executive Producer of ABC's The Wonder Years, for which he also received Peabody and Humanitas Awards. He wrote and produced the CBS hit series Early Edition and ABC's Karen Sisco, as well as adapting the novels The Prince of Tides and Scruples for television. Brush was the Pitchpipe of the 1969 Yale Whiffenpoofs, and composed the score for the Broadway musical The First, about baseball immortal Jackie Robinson. He lives in Hudson, NY with his wife, actress/writer Mel Harris. Their four children live all over the place. The Piazza: Stories from Piazza Santa Caterina Piccola is his first book.
SCOTT HOWARD lives in New Orleans with his wife Janet and is currently at work on a series of paintings entitled "Sixty Frames in Search of an Artist."

"The Piazza is a delight. These tales evoke the magic of Calvino's most beguiling works and the conscience-searing observations of Joyce's Dubliners. There's humor and wisdom in these stories, and beauty too, and - delivered so deftly you don't see it coming - the hard punch of history.

- Rachel Kadish, author of The Weight of Ink, winner of the National Jewish Book Award and the John Gardner Fiction Award

"The stories mix together like the colors in an artist's palette: funny and subversive, ironic and touching. It's an Italian romance, sparkling with light and color, filled with unexpected characters and improbable victories - as, all the while, tragedy and sorrow lurk in the sunlit shadows. It's radiant with enchantment. I loved it."

- Michael Dinner, Emmy Award winning director and producer of Justified and The Wonder Years

"In the ominous 1930s, a remote Italian village is swept up in beguiling magic. From his window, Niccolò the baker's son witnesses the strange doings in the Piazza Santa Caterina Piccola. There's a thief who traffics in stolen feelings, a pair of lovers whose fate is tangled in world events, a princess imprisoned in a convent, and a vengeful fascist. The Piazza, by writer/producer Bob Brush (he helped bring us The Wonder Years, among other treasures). His first novel is luminous."

- Salvatore DiVita, CultureWag

From Reader Reviews:

"Compulsively readable, The Piazza is accessible, funny, and profound. This vivid collection of short stories captures a breadth of human experience in the smallest details noticed by a small boy in a small town, reminding us what's possible when we pay attention to the layers of life around us."

"The Piazza explores several thought provoking themes through the lives and adventures of a handful of villagers in a small, rural Italian town. The book mixes beautiful prose, serious subjects like war and love, and steady humor through story after story. The Piazza also has beautiful illustrations at the beginning of each chapter to help create a sense of time and place without intruding on one's imagination. Bravo!"

"Bob Brush captures the essence of Italy, the sun on the cobblestones, the smells and the sounds. You quickly become immersed in the lives of the inhabitants of this lovely little village and their disappointments, joy, pain, happiness. I couldn't put it down! The inhabitants of the Piazza were each unique and yet relatable. I was drawn into their lives as they so wonderfully came to life on the pages. I still wonder what happened to all of them. Get this novel; you won't be disappointed."

"This collection of short stories was a lovely and quick read! I couldn't put it down! The stories are funny, and sad. Everything feels contemporary because of the commentary on fascism and how it can develop in society. You'll like this book if you liked Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Stout (The Piazza has a similar interconnected short story thing going, as well as wisdom about humanity and also an interesting perspective on small-town life), or if you like magical realism, or Italy. I like all of the above, so this is sort of the perfect book for me. I'd recommend getting this as a gift for a friend who's about to travel to Italy!"

"In this series of vignettes, The Piazza Santa Caterina Piccola bears witness to the everyday lives of people in an isolated village in pre-WWII Italy. With affection and humor and a genuine love for Italian culture, the author offers a look at the intimate hopes and dreams, the disappointments and sadness, and the joy and humor in the lives of the inhabitants. Each story left me feeling a little more positive abou