Llio Maddocks recites Gennaro Contaldo’s mantra this week in the top five books about passion and love.
1. Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H Lawrence
The notorious tale of how Lady Chatterley escapes her passionless marriage by having a lustful affair with the gamekeeper, and discovering the importance of being physically alive. So passionate is it that it was in fact scandalised when first published.
2. A Thousand Days in Tuscany by Marlena de Blasi
Perfect for any prospective expats, these are the memoirs of an American food writer who moves to Italy and falls equally in love with a man and the Tuscan cuisine. two loves; a man, and food. Set in rural Italian countryside, and including de Blasi’s own recipes this is an account of a rustic, relaxing, snail-paced way of life.
3. Death in Venice by Thomas Mann
A well-known writer visits Venice in order to overcome writer’s block, but becomes increasingly infatuated with a beautiful youth. The writer’s obsession comes to dominate him; his is a crippling and delirious passion close to the brink of madness.
4. The Motorcycle Diaries by Ernesto “Che” Guevara
When a 23-year-old Che Guevara travelled across South America on the back of an old motorcycle, his experience ignited a love for his country which he would die for. Beautifully written, this is an intriguing story about how a young medical student became one of the most famous guerrilla fighters in history.
5. Random Acts of Heroic Love by Danny Scheinmann
Unbelievably based on the true stories of two men from different decades, this is a moving account of determination and unwavering love as one prisoner of war journeys across Siberia after his escape and another man fights mentally to survive the traumatic death of his girlfriend 1992.