Register  Login  Active Topics  Maps  

Reading and Listening in Italian?

 Language Learning Forum : Books, Literature & Reading Post Reply
Senior Member
United States
Joined 2456 days ago

153 posts - 174 votes 
Speaks: French

 Message 1 of 5
30 April 2015 at 1:16am | IP Logged 
The thing that blew up my French, was reading, and I'd like to know what's out there for
someone at an upper beginner, to intermediate level of Italian to read? It can be any
level really, just so I get to see how things are done in the language. I had thought of
opera libretti, because I am a huge classical music fan, and a few of my favorite operas
are in Italian. I also enjoy listening to news broadcasts, or podcasts, as the people
speaking usually tend to be well spoken, and it's easy to check what they are talking
about if it is global news, because everyone talks about the same things. What in the
way of literature and books is there to read? I don't know anything about the Italian
culture beyond classical music. I'm going there next October, and would like a leg up on
what I am experiencing when I am there.

Edited by Fasulye on 04 August 2015 at 10:49am

1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
United Kingdom
rdearman.orgRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3779 days ago

881 posts - 1812 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Italian, French, Mandarin

 Message 2 of 5
30 April 2015 at 1:41am | IP Logged 
Here is a load of Italian books to read for free.
More Italian
And a load of more free/public domain books on this HTLAL thread.
4 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
ScotlandRegistered users can see my Skype Name
Joined 3750 days ago

1468 posts - 2412 votes 
Speaks: English*, Italian, French
Studies: Spanish

 Message 3 of 5
30 April 2015 at 11:59am | IP Logged 
Personally I much prefer modern books and find them more useful for my learning: more current and colloquial language, and descriptions of present-day or recent Italian culture. Unlike the more classic works in the links above, they're generally not free, but for me the cost of around £5 per book is worth it for the advantages. I'm lucky that Italian Kindle books are easily available on Amazon UK; I don't know if it's the same in the US.

Depends on your interests though. If you prefer older literature to modern works, then go for it. Translations of English-speaking authors are also an option: you miss out on the cultural aspect, but they're often easier than native-language books, and all the more so if you're already familiar with the story. Reading an Italian translation of an English book that you already know and love could be a good way to ease into reading Italian.

A few of the Italian authors I've read and enjoyed:

- Niccolò Ammaniti: crazy stories, at times reminds me of Irvine Welsh or Chuck Palahniuk. Can be on the more difficult side, with a lot of descriptive language.

- Fabio Volo: not exactly a "quality" author, slightly cheesy romance/comedy stuff, but the language is simple and modern so easy and useful for learners.

- Italo Calvino: more literary; quite challenging but beautiful writing.

- Fabio Genovesi: modern author, along similar lines to Ammaniti but easier-going and a bit less crazy.

- Beppe Severgnini: entertaining non-fiction about Italian culture.

In terms of the freely-available classics, I found Italo Svevo's "La coscienza di Zeno" relatively fun and easy to read, although quite long and with some outdated vocabulary. I've also tried some Luigi Pirandello but it wasn't really my thing.

Other authors that I'm currently reading or are on my to-read list: Dacia Mariani, Carlo Fruttero, Leonardo Sciascia, Umberto Eco, Ignazio Silone, Carlo Lucarelli. I don't have much to say about them, but they could be worth a look to see if they sound interesting.
6 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 3851 days ago

537 posts - 1045 votes 
Speaks: Cantonese*, English, Mandarin, French, Spanish

 Message 4 of 5
01 May 2015 at 4:45am | IP Logged 
I find RAI's R3M's Rassegna stampa estera relatively easy, especially those by Mazzone, Panozzo and Giordano.

And the free eBook Codice Killer (Emozioni nella Nuvola). It's the first book of a series so if you like it there're more.
1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
Russian Federation
Joined 5140 days ago

9753 posts - 15778 votes 
4 sounds
Speaks: Russian*, English, FinnishC1, Latin, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
Studies: Danish, Romanian, Polish, Belarusian, Ukrainian, Croatian, Slovenian, Catalan, Czech, Galician, Dutch, Swedish

 Message 5 of 5
01 May 2015 at 5:02am | IP Logged 
I've only read Severgnini and I highly recommend him. It's one of the few authors I can read in a distracting environment.

1 person has voted this message useful

If you wish to post a reply to this topic you must first login. If you are not already registered you must first register

Post ReplyPost New Topic Printable version Printable version

You cannot post new topics in this forum - You cannot reply to topics in this forum - You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum - You cannot create polls in this forum - You cannot vote in polls in this forum

This page was generated in 0.2656 seconds.

DHTML Menu By Milonic JavaScript
Copyright 2020 FX Micheloud - All rights reserved
No part of this website may be copied by any means without my written authorization.