La Bella Lingua by Dianne Hales

La Bella Lingua by Dianne HalesToday is La Bella Lingua‘s release date, and I have to tell you, this book is fabulous!

I got my copy two weeks ago–and flew through it in a weekend. I plan on reading it again.

For anyone who has been enchanted by the always beautiful, often frustrating Italian language and tried to grasp its basics as well as its intricacies, Dianne’s tales will not only ring true but also comfort you.

From obscure word etymologies to entertaining anecdotes, La Bella Lingua will keep you turning pages, nodding along in agreement, laughing, and even learning–I picked up quite a few new words myself.

And the writing? A sheer pleasure. Truly.

5 espresso cups out of five!

A *must* for any lover of the Italian language, this book assolutamente warrants five espresso cups out of five.


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130 Beans of Wisdom to “La Bella Lingua by Dianne Hales”
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  1. Pat

    Today, my husband and I would have been four days into a two week vacation in Italy where I would have been taking advantage of every opportunity to practice my Italian. However, four weeks ago, I fractured my leg and we had to postpone our trip. I certainly hope to read La Bella Lingua before our rescheduled vacation, hopefull, in September or October.

    Oh no! I hope you’re healing well…and reading lots of great books :)

  2. 05.16.2009

    … No e` bello quel che e` bello, ma e` bello cio` che piace!…. and Italy has everything.

    Congratulations to Dianne

    Alessio’s last blog post..Sexting Scandal Led to Suicide

    Best of luck Alessio!

  3. Sarah

    This book sounds like a must-have. Well, maybe that and a gorgeous Italian to chat to. Perhaps a glass of Brunello as well. Provanti!

    Magari, Sarah…maybe next giveaway 😉

  4. Carmen

    The book sounds fantastico! I have been struggling, trying to learn italiano for years. Three visits to Italy later and weeks and weeks of Wednesday night study groups, and I am still struggling. All 4 of my grandparents were born in Italy. Unfortunately, no one ever taught me to speak the language. Che piccata!

    Indeed, Carmen! Best of luck :)

  5. Syrahsuzie

    My daughter has just been accepted on a one year exchange with a college in Italy, near Milan.

    This would be a lovely present for her while she is waiting.

    Definitely! Best of luck!

  6. 05.18.2009

    Sounds like a great book – just caught your blog, hope I’m not to late to enter the draw! :) Either way I shall become a new visitor to your blog, keep up the good work!

    Jay’s last blog post..St Albans Cathedral

    Great to see you, Jay! And best of luck in the drawing :)

  7. 05.18.2009

    Yay, I am not too late. I have been enjoying Dianne’s blog and enjoyed reading her story on how she learned Italian. It has encouraged me to break out my Italian grammar books again and get back to studying, something I have been very lazy about the past few years.

    girasoli’s last blog post..“painted”~ PhotoHunt

    Best of luck!

  8. 05.18.2009

    Ooo! I read about this book during my hiatus – not sure where, but I am dying to read it. How exciting!

    I just blogged about another wonderful book today on my blog.

    jen of a2eatwrite’s last blog post..It is a truth universally acknowledged that a bibliophile must be in want of great summer reading…

    Looks like a great book too, Jen! Thanks for sharing :)

  9. Nan

    I’ve been reading Dianne’s blog and enjoy it very much. I haven’t taken any Italian lessons, but intend to. I love to listen to it so much I watch an Italian television program from the 80s just to hear them! They talk so fast I doubt my ability to ever become proficient.

    You’ll get there, Nan! Keep listening :)

  10. Andrea

    I’ve been lurking in Borders waiting for this book! I’d really like to read it. Oh, and please post more pics of the goats!!

    Hee hee…best of luck, Andrea! And more goat photos are coming :)

  11. 05.19.2009

    This looks fantastic! Cannot wait to read it. I once tried to learn Italian by labeling everything in my home. It sure got some odd looks!

    Kalee’s last blog post..Pet Peeves

    Hah, I bet! Hope it helped you at least :)

  12. Adrienne

    Ciao tutti,
    I, too have been learning l’italiano. At our local community college, going on 5 years now. I find that it takes me forever to do il compito/homework because I (like to) get lost searching for the meaning of one word, which leads to another word and yet another. I’ve just recently discovered Dianne’s blog and am enjoying the depth and range of her approach to la bella lingua. Grazie mille.

    I can understand that, Adrienne…there are *always* new words to learn :)

  13. vanessa

    Oh Oh pick me!
    well it is highly unlikely i’ll be picked – how many thousands of comments do you have??!!! Anyway I would love to read this book. Need some inspiration to improve my own Italian. Does your ‘prize draw’ include Italy dwellers or is the post too bad to be used?

    Italy dwellers welcome…my copy got here just fine, so hopefully that fortuna will continue 😉

  14. 05.19.2009

    Hello all, Having lived and worked in italy in calabria for over 3 years now, my problem is I have family “che sempre parlare in inglese” and my collegues at work (irlandese) e (inglese) well you can figure, being from an italian family and taught italian at a young age living in rogliano as a child, my italian was great as a kid, and then i had a position vacant for infant school in england so i went back, frightened as hell because, i could not remember english that well, worried that i would forget english, i always remembered saying to my mother, ” I DONT WANT TO TALK ITALIAN NO MORE” and she always said I would regret it.. which brings me to another thing.. Mothers are always right.. arent they? :)

    I am pleased that other people that left comments suffer some of the problems I have with the italian language!, you would of thought by living here i have in incentive to learn it!!!.. buona giornata da calabria! Italia! 😛

    Yes we all have, shall we call them, issues with Italian…sometimes it’s just nice to commiserate, isn’t it?

  15. 05.19.2009

    How did i miss this give away :-( …I would love to read this book…will look out for it, if I don’t win….!!

    anne’s last blog post..To All My Readers and Commenters…….

    You’re still in time, Anne! Good luck in the drawing!

  16. 05.19.2009

    The book sounds so fun! It just made my ‘must read’ list :)

    Hope you enjoy it as much as I did, Rebecca!

  17. n

    Been trying for 5 yrs to speak; can understand, not speak. HELP!!

    Well the book might inspire you to do better, but my best advice is to just start talking (a lot!) and making mistakes…it’s the only way to learn!

  18. 05.19.2009

    Buon Giornio (it is so here, in Canada anyway)

    I have never been to Italy, save while being transported through the film, “A Room With A View” or watching Italian-Canadian chef, David Rocco’s “Dolce Vita” and Jamie Oliver’s series in Italy as well, come to that. I would love to get there though – my husband toured Italy with his old girlfriend (she wasn’t OLD, you understand, it was just a long time ago). We’re due a trip to Italia together. For now, your blog will do me for a good hit. I love espresso too!

    I’m new here, but I have a feeling you’re going to be seeing a lot of me.

    I hope I’m still in time (I realize I’m just under the wire) for your contest. I would love to read “La Bella Lingua”.

    Please, if you have any time at all, have a gander at my poetry and miscellany blog and drop me a line.

    All the best,

    Kat (in Canada)

    Poetikat’s last blog post..Roy denies he was offered…

    Ciao and welcome! You did make it in time for the contest, so best of luck! I look forward to reading you, but I can’t find your blog :(

  19. I just discovered this book and blog yesterday (while not on this site) and got curious. This means I have to submit for this contest, although the competition is stiff at over 120-not even 10% chance of winning 😉

    Irene of American in Padua’s last blog post..An Interior View

    You never know, Irene! Best of luck :)

  20. melba

    Hello…hope all is well…I went to Italy for 2 weeks and stayed 4 years….I just took yet another vacation to Rome…I understand completely her passion for all things Italian..I’ve travelled all over the world and visited many wonderful cities in Italy and I also lived in many other countries..however, there is no place like Italy…NO PLACE LIKE ITALY…NO PLACE LIKE ITALY…p.s. the men are full of it and are so handsome and fabulous also…WHEW!!

    Hah, well I can’t argue with you there, Melba 😉

  21. Maltaise

    I would love to win this one, I am going to have to go out and buy it. Thanks for the interview.

    xo M

    Just a bit late for the contest, but it’s definitely worth picking up :)

  22. 05.22.2009

    Hi – When I originally commented, it picked up a link to my mail-server rather than my blog address. I tried to correct it, but it would not let me post again.

    You should be able to find me now.

    Don’t be alarmed by my current post, I write all sorts of poetry–you just need to dig a bit and there’s something for everyone!



    Poetikat’s last blog post..Theme Thursday: Vacation

    Gotcha Kat! Thanks for letting me know :)

  23. Carolyn

    Hi So sad I didn’t win but have found that I can buy it in New Zealand through Have ordered my copy. All the best

    Oh that’s great, Carolyn! Thanks so much for sharing the info!

  24. 06.25.2009

    Michelle I have to read this book- I adore the Ital;ian language…wish I spoke better!
    I would love to win it- but if I dont Im buying it!
    Thanks for this opportunity.

    You’re going to love it, Susan!
    .-= Susan ´s last blog ..Outdoor Wednesday =-.

  25. 04.18.2010

    Dianne’s book is wonderful! I share a similar passion for the Italian language and was so excited to find her book and blog and then meet Dianne in person in San Francisco last month! Doubly excited to have been invited to write a guest blog for her blog too. If you are at all interested in learning Italian, Dianne’s book will definitely jump start your journey! Buona lettura! Buoni studi!

    Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts Melissa!

    .-= Melissa Muldoon´s last blog ..• lo stato d’Emergency =-.

  26. 04.21.2010

    Splendid, thank you, Ciao!

    Thanks for cominb by, Ellen!

    .-= Ellen ´s last blog ..What is it about NYMH? =-.

  27. Nell

    They excerpt from the book made me laugh and smile, I know the frustration of learning Italian………..Try being Sicilian toddler immigrating to Canada and speaking only Sicilian dialect. Then going back at 15 and realizing no one speaks like you, they speak Italian Geeze Louise!, I thought that’s what I was speaking. No………. Apparently I was mistaken, and had to learn to speak words in a proper manner not the old way.I also suffer from a linguist defect cannot roll my R’s.Family finds this hilarious.
    I ‘d never survive in Scotland either,I was told by my friend Anne of Glasgow.
    I definitely buying this book , if only to find someone who like myself

    Thanks so much for sharing your experience, Nell 😀

  1. [...] I will announce the winners of La Bella Lingua on Thursday, May 21; there’s still time to [...]...
  2. [...] Lingua/Celebrate Italian Heritage Contest Remember when we talked about Dianne Hales’ book, La B...



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