Monday, June 23, 2014

My Trip to Italy

I just returned from a really great time in Italy! The wonderful organizers of Mare Di Libri invited me to join them in the beautiful city of Rimini for this three day festival. It's the only book festival for young adults in Italy, and it was such an honor to be part of it. Now on to the pics!

I arrived into Rimini in the afternoon and was met by a volunteer who kindly walked me to my hotel. I had a bit of time to rest up before setting out to meet with people and explore Rimini!

Here's the famous Bridge of Tiberius which I crossed later that day to meet
with some festival organizers . . . 

. . . and here they are. Alice, Eugenia, and Elsie, who were all so warm
and welcoming and introduced me to some fine Rimini cuisine.

After dinner, we crossed the bridge again and then
ate the best ice cream evah in the town square.

This is the ice cream store. Doesn't look like much,
but don't judge a book by its cover...

The next day I spent some time exploring Rimini. It's such a great city where old meets new seamlessly, and where you can spend time exploring old architecture then half an hour later be lounging on the beach. Here are some shots of the day's excursion:

The center of town

 The building where most of the festival took place.

The beach was amazing! I settled into a nice beachside cafe and got some good writing done. 

The only blemish on the beach was the ferris wheel
(which the locals understandably hate, but the
tourists seem to enjoy, apparently).

That night, I had an awesome time meeting and dining with the editors of the Italian publisher, Il Castoro. They did such an incredible job in publishing the HUNT trilogy in Italy, I was glad for the opportunity to thank them! The dinner was splendid: the food, the conversation, the company. Before we knew it, over three hours had passed and it was almost midnight!

Here's a photo of my Italian translator, Simona Brogli. It was scary at first meeting her because few have read my books more closely and know its shortcomings! Also, because she's a really big deal in Italy, having translated the whole The Hunger Games trilogy into Italian. But she turned out to be a wonderful, warm person!

The next day was showtime! It proved to be a really great time speaking about the trilogy and meeting so many young Italian students. They asked so many thoughtful (and thought-provoking!) questions. 

Later that day, I bid a fond and sad farewell to Rimini, then took a train to Milan. My wife flew in so we could spend a few days together. We had a great time visiting historic sites, eating great food, and exploring a brand new city and culture together!

The Duomo was better than advertised!

My wife got seriously photobombed by Ziggy Marley. 
We ate at a nice restaurant for dinner. Milanese eat dinner late so when we got there the restaurant was empty. One thing we realized was in Italy (or at least in Milan) they seat customers as close to each other as possible, even if the restaurant is otherwise empty! Case in point: 

You know that stereotype about Italian men being the most stylish and best dressed in the world? Well, totally true:

One of the highlights of my time in Milan was walking into a bookstore at the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, and finding my books (in Italian!) on the shelf!

Vienna is not the only European city with canals! Milan has them, too. You could tell it's World Cup time because of the throngs that gathered to watch.  Yes, right there on the canal.

They even had World Cup boats from which you could watch the game.

We had a great dinner by the canal. A few obligatory food shots:

Though too short, my trip was definitely brilliant! I'm going to treasure so many fond memories. A big thank you again to the organizers of Mare di Libri and the publishing team at Il Castoro for making my stay in Italy so memorable. One of the best times of my life!


  1. Vienna is really beautiful, but, as regards canals, I'd go for Venice ;-)! I also was in Rimini for Mare di Libri, wonderful experience.

  2. Now, THAT'S mussels. I only hope they did not come out of the canal.

  3. I already was in Italy a few times, but I always feel ready for another trip in this gorgeous country ! Just love it !!!

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