Cucina Tipica

An Italian Adventure

Fiction - Adventure
281 Pages
Reviewed on 07/23/2019
Buy on Amazon

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Free Book Program, which is open to all readers and is completely free. The author will provide you with a free copy of their book in exchange for an honest review. You and the author will discuss what sites you will post your review to and what kind of copy of the book you would like to receive (eBook, PDF, Word, paperback, etc.). To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email.

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Review Exchange Program, which is open to all authors and is completely free. Simply put, you agree to provide an honest review an author's book in exchange for the author doing the same for you. What sites your reviews are posted on (B&N, Amazon, etc.) and whether you send digital (eBook, PDF, Word, etc.) or hard copies of your books to each other for review is up to you. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email, and be sure to describe your book or include a link to your Readers' Favorite review page or Amazon page.

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Donation Program, which was created to help nonprofit and charitable organizations (schools, libraries, convalescent homes, soldier donation programs, etc.) by providing them with free books and to help authors garner more exposure for their work. This author is willing to donate free copies of their book in exchange for reviews (if circumstances allow) and the knowledge that their book is being read and enjoyed. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email. Be sure to tell the author who you are, what organization you are with, how many books you need, how they will be used, and the number of reviews, if any, you would be able to provide.

Author Biography

Andrew Cotto is the award-winning author of three novels and a regular contributor to The New York Times. Andrew has also written for Parade, Men’s Journal, Rolling Stone, The Huffington Post, Condé Nast Traveler, Italy magazine, Maxim, and more. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Charles Remington for Readers' Favorite

Jacoby Pines loses his job as a result of a text message finding its way unintentionally to his boss. He is fortunate to have a well-heeled fiancée who has a commission to spend a year in Italy researching off-the-beaten-track eateries for an English travel journal. But the best part is that the now unemployed Jacoby is invited to accompany her. She is unaware that Jacoby is in possession of an old photo of a woman seated outside a Tuscan villa which he found in his mother’s effects, and has wondered ever since if there could be any family connection. So commences Cucina Tipica (a typical dish or recipe), subtitled An Italian Adventure, by Andrew Cotto. Jacoby and his fiancée Claire take up residence in an old converted barn located in the hills above Florence, and very quickly start to explore the rustic cantinas and sample the delectable food and wines of the area. All does not go well, however, and Claire decides to continue her exploration without Jacoby. Although disappointing, the unfortunate circumstance enables him to concentrate on exploring the possibility that he may have family connections in Italy – a land in which he immediately felt at home.

Through a number of culinary adventures and helped by local people who become friends, the narrative, drenched in the Tuscan sunshine and steeped in the local wine, slowly delivers an enticing story along with a satisfactory ending to the puzzle. The book really got going once Jacoby was left to his own devices and began to interact with the local people. Tuscany and the surrounding area are beautifully described, as is the ‘cucina tipica’ of the area. The wines also play a large part in the storyline and the characters are solid and well-drawn. The narrative necessarily contains a lot of Italian and I was impressed with Cotto’s command of the local language and idioms. An impressive piece of work which I am sure will find a ready audience with those dreaming of lazy days in the Tuscan sunshine and heady nights in the Florentine trattorie.

Andrew Cotto

Yes, I wrote it, but I am also proud of the fact that it accomplishes exactly what I set out to do, create a love story about a place filled with interesting characters, a compelling adventure, and exquisite meals.


This was one of several books I have recently read, both fiction and nonfiction. It captures the experience of a recent arrival in Italy and his struggles with his life and familiarizing himself with a foreign land of his own roots. I suspect it somewhat parallels the author's own experiences on arriving in Italy and exploring the food and culture of Tuscany. My only objection is that so much has been written about Tuscany while there are so many other less traveled and fascinating regions that remain relatively unknown to traveling Americans.