The Vietri Project

The Vietri Project

A search for a mysterious customer in Rome leads a young bookseller to confront the complicated history of her family, and that of Italy itself, in this achingly intimate debut with echoes of Lily King and Elif Batuman.

Working at a bookstore in Berkeley in the years after college, Gabriele becomes intrigued by the orders of signor Vietri, a customer from Rome whose numerous purchases grow increasingly mystical and esoteric. Restless and uncertain of her future, Gabriele quits her job and, landing in Rome, decides to look up Vietri. Unable to locate him, she begins a quest to unearth the well-concealed facts of his life.

Following a trail of obituaries and military records, a memoir of life in a village forgotten by modernity, and the court records of a communist murder trial, Gabriele meets an eclectic assortment of the city’s inhabitants, from the widow of an Italian prisoner of war to members of a generation set adrift by the financial crisis. Each encounter draws her unexpectedly closer to her own painful past and complicated family history—an Italian mother diagnosed with schizophrenia and institutionalized during her childhood, and an extended family in Rome still recovering from the losses and betrayals in their past. Through these voices and histories, Gabriele will discover what it means to be a person in the world; a member of a family and a citizen of a country—and how reconciling these stories may be the key to understanding her own.

Title:The Vietri Project
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780063017702
Format Type:

    The Vietri Project Reviews

  • Liz Moody

    This was one of my favorite reads in a long time. It's a beautiful take on a coming-of-age novel (and even a better, a later stage coming-of-age—I loved that the narrator was in her mid20s and still...

  • Natalya

    A gorgeously written, intimate, mesmerizing book. Who doesn’t love a quest? As the protagonist seeks out her mysterious Italian gentleman, The Vietri Project traverses fascinating, devastating vigne...

  • Cari

    Booklist review to come....

  • Linda

    I tried, I really did....... maybe if i was a bit more intellectual i'd have had the wherewithal to finish? Interesting story of a U.S. bookseller, and her mission to track down an Italian customer o...

  • Devyn

    I received this book from Goodreads.The Vietri Project is a dawdling slug of a book about a 25 year old woman that hyperfixates on an old man in Rome instead of getting therapy.Not saying The Vietri P...

  • Kat

    "I had a feeling of grasping that if I could only sift together all of the stories I had heart, if I could understand these stories as a part of one story, maybe, maybe I would get close. I wondered I...

  • Mary

    ARC provided by the publisher—Harper—in exchange for an honest review.The Vietri Project is the story of how a young woman leaves all that she knows in search of herself and the eccentric signor V...

  • Donna Foster

    All about wishful thinking in an odd unresolved path. ...

  • Dead Darlings

    For more great author interviews, subscribe to deaddarlings.com!The Vietri Project is a novel as layered and rich as the millenia of Roman history on which it was built, and every bit as satisfying. I...

  • Stacy DeRobertis-theye

    Amazing read. There were so many details that tied together, and I loved experiencing Gabriele’s journey. ...