Epstein featured in the media:
Fantasy Life, January 2001 issue
This morning I am at a cross roads of sorts. For the past 2 months since I have visited Rome I still visit Rome every morning. I do so by reading your incredible book "As The Romans Do". This morning I was in quite a dilemma. Do I read the last chapter and finish the book and savor the moment. just like that expresso, doppio of course or do I wait until tomorrow to extend my vacation of the mind.
Alan, I could not put your book down! I found your writing to actually place me in Rome. Your style made me feel like I was in a conversation with you. I have never seen you on Oprah and only found out about you and your book thru a cousin who saw your book reviewed in Time or People magazine. I was amazed how someone from this area who I never met and never met me could touch me in such a way. I can only express myself by saying thank you for an incredible journey thru Rome. Bravo!
"If you've been to Rome and
thrown your coin in the Trevi Fountain, but still haven't
been able to take your return trip, As the Romans Do
will bring you back. And, if you haven't lived and loved
a trip to Rome, the book will take you there. As you
read it and figuratively walk the streets with Alan
Epstein, Rome envelopes you. The beauty, the sights,
the smells, the history that is Rome with its vibrant
past and present, fill every page. Alan's insights and
observations bring the city to you in a way no guide
book or novel ever could. You can learn the secrets
that the Romans know about a life brimming with passion
and joy, simplicity and sensuality. If you've ever fantasized
about beginning life anew in an exotic place, this book
will enthrall you. And, even if you stay right where
you are, reading As the Romans Do will inspire you to
weave a bit of that Roman wisdom into your daily life."
Publisher, Hot Topics
"I have just begun reading
"As the Romans Do," which has prompted me to contact
you on behalf of my entire family. I wanted to take
a moment to share with you a very personal and very
special family experience that all began with your wonderful
book. My sister recently purchased your book for my
father as a gift for the holidays, which was a rather
odd gift for him because in the twenty-five years I
have known my dad he has not once read an entire book. Knowing
how much he adores all things Italian (he is 100% Italian
by birth and with my mom has travelled to Italy twice
in the past three years with plans to return in 2005),
my sister thought she'd give it a shot. Actually, she
assumed that my mother would be the one to read your
book, and then share it with my dad as she went along.
Well, I am now a true believer that anything can happen
in this world, because my dad did pick up the book,
and, just for fun, started reading it, beginning with
the back cover and browsing the introduction. He did
not put it down until he had reached the last page,
and was so involved in your tale that he would laugh
out loud, check word translations in his Italian/English
dictionary, and tell the rest of us to, "Hold on a minute
until I get to the end of the chapter." Needless to
say, seeing my father read was one of the most bizzare
and heartwarming moments of my life, and since he successfully
finished one book, he has now devoured several others,
all of them being books about Italy. It has become
one of life's (and my family's) small miracles. My
father turns 50 on April 11 this year, and as a special
gift to him I have created and am working on a painting
that I have entitled "Rome is Where the Heart Is."
Included in the piece are reproductions of postcards
he sent to me from the Basilica di S. Maria Sopra Minerva,
copies of photographs he took of the pines on Palatine
Hill and of the Colosseum, and a portion of the front
cover of your beloved book. Your novel turned out to
be the most personal and romantic touch I could have
possibly added to the painting, and I thank you for
that. I also thank you from my heart for inspiring
my dad to fall deeper in love with his Italy even when
he cannot stand on her streets and breathe her air.
And my mother loved it as well.
"Alan Epstein has had an ongoing love affair with Italy. It started long ago when he was younger, and has never waned. This transplanted San Franciscan, in his new volume As the Romans Do, describes his non-fictional odyssey - the history, the culture, how Rome has invaded his very soul with an intense and romantic fervor. Whether on his weekly jog through the centro storico, his discovery of some of the city's hidden treasures, his confrontations with the Roman way of doing business, how his family has adapted to this different lifestyle, you sense his infectious enthusiasm, his passion and joy of just being there."
Radio and Television Personality
"Italy's unique character has never been epitomized more tantalizingly than in Alan Epstein's engaging book, As the Romans Do . For starters, Alan is a completely wonderful story teller. Period. And, the strange, comical, moving, and enigmatic situations he and his family found themselves in are rich material for his skill. I loved this book because it helped me to understand exactly why I find Italy so enchanting. If you are an Italophile, don't miss this book under any circumstances; you will adore it. And if you aren't, you will be after you immerse yourself in the delightful and delicious world created by these pages. "
"The Shortest Distance between You
and a Published Book"
"The sparkling intelligence with which Alan Epstein manages to celebrate both the virtues and vices of the Romans is much like Luigi Barzini's The Italians, which still makes a good read today, decades after it was written. This is due in part to the timelessness of the issues he brought up and I think it is very much in this vein that Epstein muses about Rome, providing anecdote and historical reference as living drama. Like Tim Parks's Verona based book, An Italian Education, its gentle humour makes it easy to read, and its erudition manages to bring the reader into the vivid, colorful episodes. The best thing that can be said is that, though one doesn't have to love Rome or the Romans in order to enjoy reading Epstein's, As the Romans Do, one may be sorely tempted to pick up a tip or two from a people who gave us the ultimate tribute when it came to presenting credentials: "Civis Romanus Sum, " I am a Roman citizen."
Caterer for Special Occasions
"Alan strolls through the streets of Rome, capturing the essence of contemporary Roman everyday life, managing with ease to walk and think like a 'romano.' To all of those people, who, like myself, have been born and bred in the city, but still wonder: "What is it about Rome ...?" this book is our answer. Alan, "Grazie mille."
"If any of my American or other International friends would ask me, "Why do you live in Rome?, I can now tell them to read As the Romans Do! Alan Epstein is the first "Roman" to have touched with a sense of humor and pathos the many unique details of art, odors, colors, food and lively people that enrich my life, reminding me never to stop loving this Eternal City! Grazie Alan."
"As expats living in Rome, reading Alan's book has reinvigorated our Roman experience and has served as a reminder of what we will inevitably miss the most as our assignment here comes to an end."
Deborah Stokes and James Semivan
Psychotherapist and Diplomat
"As the Romans Do just flowed -- the way it kept me reading was amazing. It was so entertaining. I was enthralled by every sentence. Since I am married to an Italian, I could relate to so many of the observations Alan Epstein made on Italian life. They reflected my feelings down to the last detail. I really loved this book. I was sad when it was over."
Housewife and Mother
"As an American living in Rome I was delighted to read a truly amusing, genuinely informative REAL take on day to day life in Rome. Alan's book is exceptionally informative for even the occasional traveler."
"Rome's charms captivate you as you immerse yourself in Alan Epstein's As the Romans Do. The vignettes exude the delight, the joy, and the exasperation of his day to day life. While reading, the city's essence infuses into you like a steaming cappuccino. Be prepared, the city's spell will catch you, too."
"As the Romans Do is a must read for anyone who enjoys anything Italian. It was entertaining, insightful, and very informative. If you liked Mayle or Mayes, you will love Epstein. I plan to give it as a gift to all my friends."
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