Friday, August 4, 2017

Welcome to The Painted Palazzo and welcome back to 50yearsinItaly!

As many of  you know, or perhaps suspected due to the  prolonged silence, my award-winning blog about lifestyle and happenings in  central Italy was hacked or blocked for over a year. 
Now the problem  seems to be resolved and I will be back with information about happenings,  travel tips and tales of life in our wonderful part of central Italy. 
This forced suspension  gave me time to dedicate to a new book, The Painted Palazzo/Il Palazzo Dipinto which came out at the end of May.   This is the 7th  book  I have published  about  this area known as Etruria and its fascinating history. 
 Here is the painting commissioned to Kelly Medford  which graces the cover. 

 It is in both English and Italian so a great help  for those wishing to improve their  second language.

Here is what the Palazzo Piatti looks like today.  You can read reviews and order copies  directly from the Books page of  my website  .

The book was unofficially presented during the 2 day conference  "Fascinazione Etrusca"  which took place at the end of May  in Capranica and Vetralla. 
Here are the organizers of the successful conference: myself, Luciano Dottarelli, Francesca Ceci and Stephan Steingraber. The photo  was taken in front of the double funerary monument of the Anguillara counts, in Capranica's  San Francesco church. 

Thanks to many talented friends, photographers, artists, translators and  contributors  who helped to make this new book a beautiful reality.  Here is one of the many photos by Venice-based photographer Eva Ohtonen showing the gardens of the painted palazzo, known as the Secret Garden and Opera Extravaganza which holds concerts there. 

 The book tells the story of the Piatti family  who had the painted palazzo built  and the many  connections with  the famous sculptor Pietro Canonica.  Here  is a self-portrait of the artist,  taken in his studio, a  castle like structure located  in Rome's Villa Borghese.
 A painting by Pietro Canonica, showing Vetralla on the skyline.

 Read  about  both books  on  the BOOKS  page  of my website .  Spread  the word  by liking and sharing on social media.


  1. Mary Jane, WELCOME BACK! I would like to order the book(s) but am headed to the airport to catch a flight. Please let me know to get you your payment. And congrats on snagging Kelly Medford for the cover!

  2. I am so excited that you are back up and running. This is Sara Jane Ruggles I am a former student of yours thru the USAC program and I currently reside in Seattle. I am very interested in purchasing your new book!!

  3. Thank you Sara and Helen. Along with Paul who sent me a message on the contact page you are the first to reserve your copies of the two books. There are still 2 more copies . Who will be the other 2 lucky people ?


  4. Hello - I would like to purchase your newest book, The Painted Palazzo. I have already read your Etruria book and enjoyed it very much.
    Please let me know how I can order The Painted Palazzo.
    Thank you!
    Kathy Corley
    Raleigh, North Carolina

  5. Hello again Mary Jane! I do read your blog still and would love The Painted Palazzo and whatever else you recommend (I have Etruia,Travels in Tuscany,Fulvios cookbook,misplaced the Irish connections)Looking forward to returning in May and love love love your books!

  6. Been trying to get your books, it is harder this time my paypal might be problem? I am hoping for your alpha and omega(affreschi (sp?) and Painted palazzo...(perhaps also viterbo audio)I can even ring you up direct with credit card info...Thank you Mary Jane! Best Regards,Jamie Stoffel(your biggest fan;)