A Season With Verona: Travels Around Italy in Search of Illusion, National Character and...Goals! by Tim Parks

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After twenty years of living in Italy, Tim Parks, whom Joseph Brodsky has called "the best British author working today," spent a full year following the fortunes - and misfortunes - of the Verona soccer club. Here is his rollicking report. Following the fans and the players from the tip to the toe of Italy, he offers a highly personal account of his relationship with a country, its people and its national sport. Verona, recently elevated to the top-rank teams - Serie A - is trudging to stay there. The fans, as always, are accused of vulgarity, racism, and violence. The police are ambiguous, the journeys exhausting, the referees unforgivable, the anecdotes hilarious. In a world stripped of idealism and increasingly bereft of religion, Parks suggests that soccer offers a new, and fiercely ironic, way of engaging with the sacred.

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