A lyrical and evocative collection of personal stories from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Under the Tuscan Sun, in which the queen of wanderlust reflects on the comforts of home.
“A soulful meditation on ‘what home means, how it hooks the past and pushes into the future’ . . . spellbinding.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Though Frances Mayes is known for her travels, she has always sought a sense of home wherever she goes. In this poetic testament to the power of place in our lives, Mayes reflects on the idea of home, from the earliest imprint of four walls to the startling discoveries of feeling the strange ease of homes abroad, friends’ homes, and even momentary homes that spark desires for other lives. Her musings are all the more poignant after so many have spent their long pandemic months at home. From her travels across Italy—Tuscany, of course, but also Venice and Capri—to the American South, France, and Mexico, Mayes examines the connective tissue among them through the homes she’s inhabited.
A Place in the World explores Mayes’s passion and obsessions with houses and the things that inhabit them—old books, rich food, beloved friends, transportive art. The indelible marks each refuge has left on her and how each home influenced the next serve as the foundations of its chapters.
Written in Mayes’s signature intimate style, A Place in the World captures the adventure of moving on while seeking comfort in the cornerstone closest to all of us—home.
Frances Mayes is the author of the classic Under the Tuscan Sun, which was a New York Times bestseller for more than two and a half years and became a movie starring Diane Lane. Her other international bestsellers include Bella Tuscany, Every Day in Tuscany, A Year in the World, and three illustrated books: In Tuscany, Bringing Tuscany Home, and The Tuscan Sun Cookbook. Mayes is also the author of two novels, Swan and Women in Sunlight, six books of poetry, and The Discovery of Poetry. Her most recent books are See You in the Piazza and Always Italy. Frances Mayes’s writing has been translated into more than fifty languages.
Praise for A Place in the World
“Mayes delivers a soulful meditation on ‘what home means, how it hooks the past and pushes into the future’ in her spellbinding latest. She examines the question through an evocative tour of her homes. . . . This rich testament to the pleasures of wanderlust and permanence is a gift.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Another lush account of family and place . . . The writing is characteristically intimate, as if she is sharing her thoughts and feelings with a dear friend, and she employs eloquent and detailed descriptions, creating a wonderful sense of place. A can’t-miss hit for Mayes fans.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)Praise for Frances Mayes
“Tuscany may have found its own bard in Frances Mayes.”—The New York Times
“Those who want to find parts of themselves they didn’t know existed, take risks, have an adventure . . . and discover another culture altogether, with its different rhythms, tastes, smells, and ways of being human—those readers will find in Mayes a kindly, eager, tough-spirited guide.”—Houston Chronicle
“Mayes’s writing about Italy is the next best thing to a plane ticket.”—People
“Frances Mayes is, before all else, a wonderful writer. . . . She never loses sight of the fact that millenniums-old Tuscany, with its immemorial customs and folkways, is not to be domesticated or made familiar. Her Italy remains intransigently foreign, exotic, a continuing revelation of strangeness and unexpected beauties.”—Chicago Tribune