New Year has just shown up together with the wind of enthusiasm and good proposal planning which usually goes with it. Some of us will once again decide to subscribe an annual membership to the gym around the corner from home and others will go for the yoga sessions so as to train body and mind. The foodies have already set eyes on the “Masterchef secret kitchen course” with a chef who hopefully enough looks like the new star Carlo Cracco and others have decided to opt for the “PC first steps” course… and at Italy Green Travel we have decided to go for a “green philosophy booking selection”: 12 books, one for each month of 2014 rich in suggestion with how to “go green”.

January: “Plan B” by Lester Brown – Ed . Norton

If your “Plan A” fails, do you have a “Plan B”? Mr L. Brown has and shared it with us all. Our “Plan A” that is the actual way we are all living and making use of natural resources seems not liable to stay with us long and we all need a “Plan B” based on reusable and rechargeable energetic resources, low environment impact transports, raise of water and land productivity, respond to social emergencies such as instructions, basic health initiatives, etc. If you are starting or have  already realized that playing under the motto “Business as usual” is not an efficient way, you cannot miss the opportunity to find that a change is possible and each and any of us can make this change!

February:  “Nessuno lo farà al posto tuo” by Marco Boschini – Ed. EMI

Bet you have 2 hour to discover how to save some money in 2014 Whether you are concerned about climate change, personal health or just want to live more lightly on the planet, this book is for you. Start from the beginning: what is our state of the art situation? Become aware of what is going on and where we are is the first step. Be able to implement a change is the second step. Mr Marco Boschini makes his point clear enough: it is not so easy to change in a society where we are overwhelmed by continuous prompts to make and be/look better and at the end you surrender to a comfortable routine. And yet, if we resist the comfortable escape into our conventional ways of living we may be awarded with a more clear vision of the real meaning an opportunity in this crisis and … save some money as well!  Let’s find out how.

March: “Prepariamoci” by Luca Mercalli – Ed. Chiarelettere

Let’s keep our brain switched on and … switch off our lamps! Do you think this crisis we are all going through could be really a turning point in our present time and offer us a new prospect on what happiness is? You will be relieved to know you are not the only one. Luca Mercalli writes extensively on the opportunities of a concrete change in the way we live our social, economical and political dimensions:  resiliency and a clear program affecting the way we use the resources, the way we live, the way we do politics. If you want to talk about a possible change and implement it, find here your program and how to start.

Books and canals by H. Dinkelberg via Flickr


April: “La pecora di Pasqua” by Agnello Hornby Simonetta and Agnello Chiara – Ed. Slow Food

The perfect reading for your Easter Holiday A short and easy to read novel about love and the lack of it and about the tradition Easter cake every woman knows she is to or will prepare for her loved ones, the Sicilian Easter Marzipan Lamb. And the novel is also a rediscovery of the traditions and magic routines of a land, Sicily, where the almond fields were part of the aristocratic family estates and the almond harvest was one of the season events. Almost incredible such a small fruit was the base of so many patrimonies now completely disappeared. And if you wish to get to know more about local food Terra madre day: the world celebrates local food.


May: “Il piacere dell’orto” by Alberto Arossa, Paolo Bolzacchini and Ezio Giraudo – Ed. Slow Food.

Never thought of growing your own tomatoes and have some pasta with real homemade tomato sauce? A little veg garden was the routine for every family owning a croft but we lost that tradition and as it happens … “out from the door and back through the window”.  More and more experiences of orchards and veg gardens, city ones or “social ones”, are scattering through our cities and villages. Have you ever though a garden may provide us with fresh products and be a joy for our eyes and our chaotic life as well? An exercise of self sufficiency as far as some products are concerned and a zen exercise to recover more regular and humanlike sense of the time, an easy way to learn our kids and discover ourselves “there is a time to plant and a time to uproot”, an unexpected way to spy over the arrival of the springtime and to make friendships (social veg gardens and orchards), a passion to share 15 technical practical sessions to start your own veg garden and orchard And it is also trendy! Incredible edible cities. Eating local has never been that easy…


June:  “A piedi sulla via Francigena” by Fabrizio Ardito – Ed. Ancora.

Is the Via Francigena the new Way of St James in Italy? Mr F. Ardito walked on it for 32 days (and nights) in 2007 discovering old villages, rivers, woods, etc. The actual itinerary known as the Via Francigena is the path the to be Canterbury archbishop, Sugerico, walked along in 990. He started off in Canterbury and reached the Pope’s court where he was to receive his formal assignment as the Canterbury archbishop in 79 days.  Mr F. Ardito walked the Italian portion of the antique Via Francigena from the Great Saint Bernard through Aosta, Vercelli, Piacenza, Pontremoli, Lucca, Siena, Bolsena and finally Rome. Read out the whole adventure and discover you can do it and find all info easily on Via Francigena Official Site and Walking in Italy without any map: discover the Via Francigena by foot!

Sapporo Bookstore by Mt Hicks46 via Flickr
Sapporo Bookstore by Mt Hicks46 via Flickr


July:  “Monasteri in Italia” by Pietro Tarallo and GianMaria Grasselli- Ed. Touring .

Fancy of a holiday under the sign of “The name of the rose”? If you think there is no place where to go and find peace and rest with no cell ringing, people chatting about anything and noises of any kind polluting the air, this guide to Italian monasteries could prove you wrong and light up your hopes. One million and a half persons, individual travelers and family as well, have already chosen to spend their holidays in a monastery and share some of the rigid rules at the base of the monastery life. The only rule each monastery requires travelers to respect is the silence from 9.00 PM to 6.00 AM. Other rules become less strict and guests can choose if to attend official services or not. Some monasteries just ask for a free donation and others apply prices but your vacation will anyway be under the sign of low cost. August: “Fuori dai soliti binary. 31 insoliti itinerari in Italia” by Paola Donaticci and Umberto Di Maria – Ed. Terre Di mezzo. Traveling by train on secondary routes: it is eco, it is low cost and it is good for your mind. TAV and high speed train go away! Let’s treat ourselves to the ultimate luxury: slow down and take your time. If the goal is not the final destination but the journey, you will not be able to find a better place to travel and discover the little gems of Italy usually forgotten by more glamorous itineraries. September: “Bio wines of Italy 2013” by P. Rastelli – Ed Tecniche Nuove. Wonder how many Italian wines are officially certified as “biologically grown”? The XVI issue of this guide is now a “vademecum” any wine traveler interested in new wine making techniques and secrets cannot miss. 871 wines produced by 214 wineries all through Italy. The peak of excellence is once again the Tuscany region where 50 wines have been recognized as featuring the highest levels of quality: the small region of Marche is following and Sicily and Veneto are not far away. Step into the Autumn mood finding out what winery you could decide to go and visit  during the first week ends of the new season and where a glass of strong red or gold wine are good for your body and for the planet as well. And if looking for a place to stay, go for the green ones at

Mobilbookshop in Usa & Canada by Jonathan Dueck  via Flickr
Mobilbookshop in Usa & Canada by Jonathan Dueck via Flickr


October: “La religiosità della terra” by Duccio Demetrio – Ed. Raffaello Cortina.

Is our mother Earth turning into our fragile daughter Earth? Can we get back or just start to pay more attention to our Earth and the multiplicity shapes of its being? Can we even conceive a story of our being, individually or socially, with no mention of the changes and the danger our planet has and is undergoing? Can Nature still teach us something about ourselves through its wonderful expressions even the more frightful ones? Can we feel a sense of “stupor mundi” just in front of a desert or the highest mountain? Have we lost the capacity to see the force and the beauty in the smallest natural forms around us? If you feel your 2014 will be led by a new vision of our planet do not miss the new published book by Mr D. Demetrio.  So good for our body and soul.


November:  “The old ways. A journey on foot” by Robert Mcfarlane – Ed. Einaudi.

Have you ever thought to go out and just start walking through the world? Robert Macfarlane steps on the prints of his much more famous inspirors such as Chaucer, Marco Polo up to Chatwin and walks through the old routes men and women used to, the old ways human knowledge spread through the world. From the old paths in the green lavish English countryside to the dried and sun burnt trails of Palestine where check points and walls reminds you war and conflicts are not far away, this book renews its charm at each reading. And after that, you will no longer be able to “just go for a walk”! Some more ideas for your domestric walks on Let’s go trekking. In italian cities, of course!


December: “Salvare l’ambiente conviene” by Mr Jacopo Fo – Ed. Nuovi Mondi

What if I were to tell you that you can save the environment and save money as well? Mr J. Fo makes a vivid and detailed report of the present situation in terms of the economic crisis and its consequences on our everyday life and speak it out: let’s do something right now to save our environment because we may not have any more chances. The second half of the book is a series of examples and useful guidelines of what and how each of one can make a change: solidarity based purchasing groups, sun energetic heating systems, etc. Want to have sun heating panels but are you afraid finding out the right supplier and workmen to install it will take time and resources? Look at the pages with all the suppliers’ tips and tricks.

Now you have the theorical and practical tools to really MAKE a CHANGE and be the ONE WHO MAKES IT HAPPEN, so…What is your 2014 commitment? We look forward to hearing from you

Author: Cristiana Pedrali

"Loving your job is the closest you can get to happiness on earth” (Rita Levi Montalcini) and “when real people fall down in real life they get back on their feet and carry on walking” (Carrie Bradshaw, Sex and the City): these are my two mantras. I’m a bit like this: I go through being serious to playful to help me manage a thousand different interests and commitments, keeping a smile through it all. I work in the tourism industry and on the web and every so often I look for some breathing space through reading and travel!
More posts by Cristiana Pedrali →

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