It’s a collection of 31 chapters, stories by people living in Venice during the flooding of November 2019 and the lockdown of Spring 2020. You’ll read poems, narratives, a transcribed phone conversation, letters, a series of posters–all authentic voices during these events that will be remembered hundreds of years from now. You’ll hear from rowers, teachers, artists and traditional craftspeople, designers, a shop owner, a waiter, a banker, a lawyer, writers, environmentalists, chefs, tour guides–all people who are looking forward to Venice’s rebirth after these trying months.
Hopefully you already know about First Spritz Is Free: Confessions of Venice Addicts, the first anthology that I published in 2018. Reader Rosemary Wilmot contacted me with the idea to gather the stories of Venetians living through these extraordinary events. She also wrote the Foreword for Venice Rising. Thanks to her, this book was born, and she nurtured it all along the way.
You may be asking, “Why did you write, “Aqua granda? Shouldn’t it be acqua alta?” Aqua granda is the term used in veneziano/venexiano for the once-in-a-century flood, not the high tides that inundate the city over 100 times a year. The last aqua granda was in 1966. Since this book is about Venice and Venetians, we wanted to honor the language and unique event. In fact, a couple of the chapters are only in Italian, three are in both English and Italian, and nearly all chapters contain words in Italian or veneziano.
All proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to local organizations that help preserve Venetian culture and protect the city: We are here Venice, No Grandi Navi, and Venice Calls. That means that all the writers contributed their stories purely for their love of their city. That love comes through in each of their chapters.
We’ve already received AMAZING reviews from Venetophiles and authors Michelle Lovric, Laura Morelli, JoAnn Locktov, and Dianne Hales. I’ll post those soon, or you can see them on Amazon or the book’s website. The ebook is available on Smashwords. If you live near me, let me know if you want a copy of the book and I’ll sell it to you directly (and more of the profits go directly to the charities this way, too!).
Go right now and mix a spritz, ombra, or your favorite aperitivo. Raise your glass to these resilient Venetians and their lovely, watery, unique city. Venice Rising is their story, but it’s up to all of us to preserve and protect this unique treasure.