My Italian Bulldozer

My Italian Bulldozer

A Novel

Book - 2017
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The best-selling author of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series returns with an irresistible new novel about one man's adventures in the Italian countryside.

Paul Stuart, a renowned food writer, finds himself at loose ends after his longtime girlfriend leaves him for her personal trainer. To cheer him up, Paul's editor, Gloria, encourages him to finish his latest cookbook on-site in Tuscany, hoping that a change of scenery (plus the occasional truffled pasta and glass of red wine) will offer a cure for both heartache and writer's block. But upon Paul's arrival, things don't quite go as planned. A mishap with his rental-car reservation leaves him stranded, until a newfound friend leads him to an intriguing alternative: a bulldozer.

With little choice in the matter, Paul accepts the offer, and as he journeys (well, slowly trundles) into the idyllic hillside town of Montalcino, he discovers that the bulldozer may be the least of the surprises that await him. What follows is a delightful romp through the lush sights and flavors of the Tuscan countryside, as Paul encounters a rich cast of characters, including a young American woman who awakens in him something unexpected.

A feast for the senses and a poignant meditation on the complexity of human relationships, My Italian Bulldozer is a charming and intensely satisfying love story for anyone who has ever dreamed of a fresh start.
Publisher: New York : Pantheon, [2017]
Edition: First United States edition.
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9781101871393
Branch Call Number: MCCALL S
Characteristics: 232 pages ; 23 cm


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From the critics

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Sep 08, 2019

Like a lightweight red.
Little reminders of Italy. Weak ending for me.

Jun 04, 2019

A little too slow for my taste. Whilst some parts were quite engaging, this novel failed to 'draw me in'. Maybe because having read quite a few novels based in Italy, I expected this one to be just as entertaining and make me feel transported to that beautiful country. So partly it was my fault that I expected a little too much.

Oct 26, 2018

Delightful! The bulldozer was what caught my attention and kept me smiling. It's a light comedy of errors, with characters that are caricatures of themselves--plus a beautiful Italian countryside.

Aug 07, 2018

Author Alexander McCall Smith’s signature writing style is much like the passeggiata, the Italian custom of the evening stroll. MY ITALIAN BULLDOZER is a standalone novel and, as the story S-L-O-W-L-Y meanders, McCall Smith inserts his gentle observations on human behavior, culture, and social issues. It’s definitely not action-packed, but the charming descriptions of the hilltop town of Montalcino may inspire readers to travel to Italy. This short book’s worth considering when you’re between heavier tomes. MY ITALIAN BULLDOZER is best enjoyed on a lazy afternoon, preferably with a glass of Brunello or Rosso wine.

JessicaGma May 08, 2018

A nice light fluffy tale of Paul who escapes to Italy to write his current food book. Lots of romance and a bulldozer. It's a definite beach read.

Apr 23, 2018

A funny, lovely book. Brought back very fond memories of time spent in Montalcino and a glass of Barolo.

Apr 09, 2018

Just when you think McCall Smith has ventured into every possible culture, he does it again and goes off on a new tangent. This was delightful!

Mar 12, 2018

Uneven but enjoyable enough, especially when Paul described driving his bulldozer through the Italian countryside. I was puzzled by the characters and their behaviour, though: at some point it stopped making sense.

14Shylit Jan 10, 2018

This book was so wonderful. Within the first few pages I thought I new exactly how it would end. Throughout the book I was surprised and excited with each turn of the story. Normally I am angry with an ending, whether it be too sappy or just too short, but the ending in this book gave me a feeling of completion.

Aside from the story, Alexander McCall Smith has written on my heart a longing to visit Italy. I find his writing so beautiful that I want so badly to see the scenery he has described.

The only downside for me about this book is that the pace was very slow for me. I understand that it fits the Italian lifestyle described in the book, but it was difficult for me to get used to.

Nov 08, 2017

This book left me underwhelmed. I'm partly to blame for my lack of enthusiasm, I checked it out not realizing it was a novel; I assumed it was a memoir about someone renovating a house in Italy. But I read it anyway, thinking that it sounded interesting enough - I'll read anything set in Italy. I didn't especially like any of the characters (and Paul sounds NOTHING like the late-thirties modern man he's supposed to be) which made it a bit of a slog to finish. For a book set in Italy with a food writer as the protagonist, there was surprisingly little food - another disappointment. All in all, not a horrible book, but not especially memorable.

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Aug 07, 2018

“Sometimes the things that are most important to you are right under your nose and you just don’t notice them. Then the scales fall from your eyes when you are away from home, in a small hill town in Tuscany, for example, where unusual and extraordinary things happen and then you realize how rich life is, and how precious.” - p. 232


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