1. Pride and Prejudice
2. Northanger Abbey + Sanditon, The Watsons and Lady Susan
To get a chance to win the two books, read Ms Lucy's interview, comment and leave your e-mail address. The giveaway is open internationally and winner will be announced on Monday 22nd March.
1. So Lucy, welcome on Fly High! I’m so pleased you accepted my invitation. Please, tell us something about you just to have a start.
Thanks so much for having me, Maria Grazia. I love your blog and find the stuff you post is always so very interesting and well researched, and for a lover of all that is literature, it’s simply an honour for me to be a part of this! So here’s a bit about me...I was born in Montreal, Canada; raised in an Italian home. Both my parents are originally from the Veneto region of Italy (hence my passion for all that is Venetian) I studied Literature and Languages at the University level and specialized in both French and English. I also studied Human Relations (Commerce and Communications) and History. All this led me to a career in teaching and language consulting. On a more personal level, I’m happily married and the mother to five...very intense kids!
2. Five, astonishing! I can't imagine what it may be like! Two sons are already a huge load of work to me. And they are teenagers, already. Well, better not to start. Italian mothers can talk about their children for hours!
So, I remember you were one of my first supporters and you are still always so kind and appreciative of my efforts. I have to thank you for so many things! Let’s mention just two of them: you suggested me to take part in the Everything Austen Challenge last year and I won my first giveaway at your site. One of my best 2009 reads, Cleopatra’s Daughter by Michelle Moran. How did you find me and my blogs ? Can you remember?
Maria Grazia, I can’t remember exactly how we met, but I’m pretty sure it was through one of the Austen blogs. I think you commented, or, were somehow linked by another blogger. But the one thing that is certain is that I had to absolutely seek you out- and when I found your blog I was hooked immediately. I love the way you combine literature, love of reading, history and teaching all in one. Your reviews are fabulous and so in-depth. There’s tons of room for creativity and activities to help further elaborate a teaching theme. It’s wonderful!
3. Your blog, Enchanted by Josephine, is fabulous. How and when did you start blogging? What do you most appreciate of the blogoworld?
Thank you so much! I’ve basically been a reader all of my life- I actually used to write reviews for my students in order to entice them to read up on great books. One day, just like that, I decided to explore the online world to see what was out there in terms of history, literature and reviews. I was blown away with what I found. There is so much great material out there. So, I basically decided to start a blog to share my own passion for reading of history, and to share my finds. I can’t believe so much happened within one year.
4. Of course, you like reading a lot. What are your favourite authors, genres, books?
I love reading anything that has to do with history; both fiction and non-fiction. My all time favourite historical fiction author is Jean Plaidy. Although her books are classified as historical fiction, her work is incredibly accurate in terms of the history. I also love Jane Austen. Because of the quality of literature, wit and underlying wisdom between the lines, Austen is more than classic. As for a modern-day author of historical fiction, I would have to choose Sandra Gulland- her Josephine trilogy is superb. I also revel in reading real history and for that, there’s none other than historian-author, Vincent Cronin for me.
5. Apart from reading and blogging we share something else. Teaching?
Yes, we do! I specialize in teaching ESL and also train teachers in this area. Although I have moved onto doing more language consulting these days, where I create teaching manuals and language facilitation programs for companies and language institutions, I still take on a couple of classes a month. You know how it is...once a teacher, always a teacher.
6. Anything else I forgot? I mean, anything else we have in common…
Besides teaching, reading, blogging, Austen, love of the English language and literature...that’s quite a bit! I would have to add that our Italian roots are also another thing in common.
7. I’m fond of period drama and movies. What about you?
Oh, yes! That’s another one we have in common. I especially love historical movies- both at the theatre and on PBS or the History channel. I also make sure I get to watch every Austen movie. The ones that have played on television just recently, were pure delight for me.
8. Being of Italian origin, what do you think is typically Italian in you? (if you think you’ve got anything …)
For sure my love of family, the arts (in all forms), food and wine- striving for La Dolce Vita in general with a mix of being passionate to the extreme in all things I take on- I think is typically very Italian of me. Oh, and something else that you can’t see online: I talk with my hands (very practical when teaching a new language and need to be understood!) No, seriously, I’m very animated- I guess that falls into the Italian category as well ; -)
I want to add a little anecdote if I may- without it being called stereotypical...cause this actually happened. I remember my mom always being the loudest when calling me from out to play- same was true for my aunt when calling in my cousins. Their voice carried through the streets of Montreal like sirens. Even kids 3 or 4 blocks away would know when we were being called in for lunch...so one day I said to my mom ‘people are always asking me why Italian Moms are so loud’—Her reply: ‘Maybe Italian Moms speak very loudly because their Italian children don’t listen very well!
Believe it or not, I now use the same line with my own children.
9. Which is the best thing / which, instead, the worst thing of living in Italy (for what you know or experience of it)
The best thing of living in Italy...I can only speak of my childhood summers spent in what I believe is Europe’s garden... I think Italy is the most breathtakingly beautiful country I’ve ever seen. I love the warmth of the people and the country and am always blown away by the art and the history. I particularly love the way Italians keep abreast of the times. Not only are they constantly innovating and creating, they are trend setters by nature.
10. With Antonella-lunarossa we played the game of “the one weakness”in her interview. I want to change it a bit … what do you think is your strength?
I would have to say that my greatest strength has got to be my capacity to take on various projects at a time. You can say that I work quite well under stress! This is partiularly useful when taking on new research involving reading and writing projects, course loads, mandates- But, most especially in my number one job of being a Mom.
Maria Grazia, I loved your questions...the only thing missing was the two of us sipping a delicious capuccino together.
I love cappuccino and black coffee, too. But very long coffee…this is not very Italian, I know. Hope to meet you in Italy and to have the chance to chat at a table sipping our cappuccino together, Lucy. Thank you so much for being my guest!