***Surrounded by beauty, can you learn to live beautifully? ***
Travel marketing executive Mark Vandermar leads an itinerant life. Elsewhere is where he calls home, so it's no surprise when he's called to Venice to help craft the Venice Tourism Council's new campaign to attract skittish post-September 11 American tourism dollars.
As he gets to know Venice's colorful campos and canals, his relationship with Venice grows more complex and its fascinating history both influences him and becomes a mirror reflecting the turbulence of the early twenty first century. In addition to Venice, Mark's journey of discovery unfolds among some of Europe's most captivating locales, including Prague, Budapest and the Greek islands where he encounters a cast of compelling characters that lead to life-changing consequences.
The geography of his new life is marked with discovery and reinvention, but what he really seeks is to learn to live beautifully, to find a place and a person to call home.
Like the finest expatriate novels, Losing Venice is as richly textured as its fabled locales and dives deeply into the possibilities, perils, and pleasures of learning how not to be lost.
"This funny, poignant account of failure that turns to success is beautiful...it captures a moment and place that though, in the recent past, seems as distant as Hemingway's Paris—and as important. A reminder of what the business of literature, of loving is. All lovers of the art of writing and romance should read it."
George Crane, best-selling author of Bones of the Master and Beyond the House of the False Lama
"This remarkable, beautifully written novel is packed with excitement and absurdity, longing and love, but its triumph is its narrative… Therein lies its magic…the rhythm of shimmering reflections…creates and sustains the music of the novel. It is in these comedic and poetic patterns…we hear the waves lap against fondamenta, feel the fat raindrops beat on open umbrellas…show us that we all, whether we know it or not, possess the ability to fill each moment, great or small, with life, love, and curiosity if we just make the gesture. Losing Venice is a wonderful book. A damned wonderful book.
Larry Francis, author of An Anthropology of Anonymity and other novels