Friday, March 21, 2014

Chasing the Rose: An Adventure in the Venetian Countryside by Andrea Di Robilant

Chasing the Rose: An Adventure in the Venetian Countryside
Andrea Di Robilant
5/5 stars

I was given this book by the Amazon Vine program in return for an honest review.

In Chasing the Rose, di Robilant chronicles his attempts to uncover the identity of a pink rose, lightly scented of peaches and raspberries, found on a former family estate. This rose was most likely brought back from France by his great-great-great-great- grandmother Lucia, and seems to be one of the "lost" old rose varieties.

In this academic and horticultural journey, di Robilant introduces the reader to rose growers and rose species, gives a history of roses in Europe, shares how Lucia developed a passion for roses from the Empress Josephine, and allows the reader to join him in his quest to identify and register his mystery rose.

Chasing the Rose is well-written, with smooth and graceful prose in a charming style, enhanced by elegant illustrations. In fact, reading this memoir is akin to a walk in a rose garden: the story paths meander at a slow and luxurious pace, sometimes winding back upon themselves, but with the end result being a thoroughly delightful experience.

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