Buon giorno! Or buona sera, depending on what time you’re reading this.
As I mentioned last time, what with all my health problems blah blah blah I decided for my next series to take a break from the gloomy North and revisit and revise my “Italian” stories. Of course, those stories turned out to be pretty dark too, but whatever.
Free ARCs of “The Shadowy Man,” the first novella in the Giaco & Luca series, are available for a couple more days in the April Fool for Fantasy Giveaway!
I showed up in Milan, Italy in the summer of 1999, after a somewhat fun, somewhat harrowing journey from Prague via Austria, where I’d been visiting with friends. My first few days in Milan, which was going to be my new home for an unspecified amount of time, were passed in a daze of exhaustion and confusion. I didn’t speak a word of Italian, and we (I was there with my family) were living in a hotel, waiting for our house to be ready for us to move in.
But then, ladies and gentlemen, I heard this song on MTV Italia (ah, the MTV Italia VJs! So stylish! So handsome!), and realized everything was going to be all right. Any culture that could produce something this ridiculously happy had to be a good place:
Not only that, but the song was a great way to learn the future tense, once I started studying Italian!
What songs have you used to help learn a foreign language? It’s one of my favorite methods, so I’m always on the lookout for more good songs to listen to.
While my Italian is, alas, terribly rusty at this point, I did enjoy whipping it out as I was working on the Giaco & Luca stories. I wanted to strike a balance between making them comprehensible to non-Italian speakers, and including plenty of Italian seasoning. So there are a goodly number of Italian words and phrases in them. Here’s a short list, in no particular order, of some of the most repeated:
Il Castello Maggiore: Lit. “The major/main castle.” The main keep in the double castle where the royal family lives.
Il Castello degli Eredi: Lit. “The castle of the heirs.” The smaller keep for the royal heirs in the double castle.
La Città dei Fiori: Lit. “The City of Flowers.” My version of Firenze/Florence.
Viale: Large street, avenue
Vietta: Small street, alley
Piazza: City square
Piazzale: Large city square
Lo Sfilatro: The Unraveller.
Felix il Felice: Felix the Happy
Sinistro: Sinister/left, as in the lefthand side of something
You see how easy Italian is? It’s a complete snap! At this rate, you’ll be fluent before you know it 🙂 There are more Italian words in the later stories, but maybe I’ll hold off on those until they’re closer to release. Meanwhile, Buona giornata/serata a tutti! Ci vediamo pronto!
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