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Palladian Days


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About the Author

Sally Gable, a church music director by training, has served on the boards of Radcliffe College, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and other educational and musical organizations. Carl I. Gable, a lawyer and businessman and the author of a book on Venetian glass, has served on the boards of the Spoleto Festival USA, the Atlanta Opera, the Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University, and the Center for Palladian Studies in America. They divide their time between Atlanta and Villa Cornaro in Italy.


Eighteen of the innovative 16th-century villas by Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio survive today in Italy's Veneto region, and one of them, Villa Cornaro, made it onto Town & Country's list of the world's 10 most important buildings. The sixth family to occupy this country house during its 450-year history, the Gables reside there for half the year (she's on the boards of various educational and musical organizations; he's a lawyer and author of a book on Venetian glass). Sally Gable portrays the villa, the people who live in the surrounding countryside and their fading traditions, which "may be in their last generation." In fluid prose, she recalls the 1987-1988 negotiations that led to the couple's purchase, the previous inhabitants and her research into the history of the palatial house, its 104 frescoes and Palladio himself. Surmounting swarming bees and the usual maintenance problems, the Gables brought grandeur back to the villa, eventually receiving house guests and film crews, hosting dinner parties and staging cultural events. This delightful mix of memoir, travel guide and recipes is, in essence, a twist on these well-worn genres-a very chic, expensive twist at that. Photos. Agent, Kitty Benedict. (July 1) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Andrea Palladio is often considered the most significant architect in the history of Western art. This is the story of an American couple who make his 16th-century, fresco-filled Villa Cornaro, located a few miles from Venice, their second home. As they renovate, restore, and incrementally modernize the building, they study its history, provide guided tours, and open the space for community arts performances. This summer residence is also the base from which they explore Venice and visit other Palladian buildings in the area while learning to adapt to a life lived partially in the Veneto region of Italy. While the book is filled with interesting anecdotes about the problems of maintaining a 450-year-old home and the confusion that comes from adapting to another culture, the author jumps from story to story without transition, often leaving the reader contextually stranded. Palladian design, Venice, and the villa itself are not covered in sufficient detail to recommend this book as a source on these topics. Appropriate only for larger armchair travel collections pertaining to Italy.-Sheila Kasperek, North Hall Lib., Mansfield Univ., PA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

"If a vacation in Italy this summer just isn't going to make the cut, this book might be the next best thing." -Chicago Tribune"Timeless and completely modern. . . . Should be enjoyed while dreaming of the Venetian countryside, a tall glass of Prosecco in hand." -Forbes FYI"Palladian Days lifts the notion of buying a summer house to dizzying and delightful new heights. Sally and Carl Gable's fascinating account reads like a fast-paced, marvelously satisfying adventure story." -John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and The City of Falling Angels

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