Pizza in Pienza

Susan Fillion. Godine, $17.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-56792-459-6
The history of pizza charmingly unfolds in a bilingual story with handsome paintings that also celebrate the dish’s country of origin. “My favorite place to go is Giovanni’s, and my favorite food is pizza. I close my eyes and breathe in all the warm and savory smells,” explains a girl with a chestnut-brown bob, who lives in the Italian town of Pienza. As she explains pizza’s origins, she introduces readers to the customs of her community: “Life here is still pretty old-fashioned. The trucks are small, the policemen ride horses, and people walk everywhere.” Fillion (Miss Etta and Dr. Claribel: Bringing Matisse to America) brings the setting to life in dense, expressive paintings with shades of ochre, sienna, and royal blue; in a lighthearted image, da Vinci’s Mona Lisa appears with a slice of pizza dangling from her hand. A trip to the library allows the girl to share additional information, and her whirlwind tour of Italian culture and history, filtered through a veil of mozzarella, is lively and sweet. Endpages discuss pizza’s past and present in detail, and Fillion’s recipe for Pizza Margherita is included. Ages 6–up. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 07/08/2013
Release date: 06/01/2013
Genre: Children's
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