Friday, June 11, 2010

Coffee with a canine: Justine van der Leun & Marcus

This weekend's featured couple at Coffee with a Canine: Justine van der Leun & Marcus.

The author, on how she and Marcus were united:
It’s a classic story with a canine twist: Girl meets boy, girl loves boy, girl moves to backwoods Italy to be with boy, girl meets dog, girl leaves boy and keeps dog. Basically, I fell in love with an Italian gardener named Emanuele and moved to his village to be with him. While our romance was falling apart — a real shocker, right? — I stumbled upon a starving, neglected birddog in a cage in the back of his family farm. I took one look at that dusty little face behind the wire and I knew she was mine. Her owners didn’t want her. We spent a year exploring the brutal, beautiful countryside together, and then hopped a flight...[read on]
Among the early praise for Marcus of Umbria:
“A sweet, disarming story finds a young New York editor venturing to Italy to pursue romance with a sexy gardener and ending up falling for a neglected dog instead. In her straightforward, unembellished prose…the author manages to capture the lovely, vanishing Old World ways of these tightly knit people, while also interweaving a heart-melting tale.”
--Publishers Weekly

“Van der Leun’s memoir is a funny and surprisingly tender story about culture shock, and the unwavering love of a dog.”

“Justine van der Leun is blessed with the elusive gift of storytelling. In prose both lyrical and spare, she captures the beauty of a foreign land, the comedy of cultural clashes, the mystery of love lost and found, and, without ever dipping into sugary sentimentality, the unique bond between human and dog. The effect is utterly charming. I was engaged from start to finish.”
--John Grogan, author of Marley & Me and The Longest Trip Home

Marcus of Umbria combines the personal journey of Eat, Pray, Love with the madcap adventures of Bridget Jones’s Diary, all on a farm with a dog. Justine van der Leun’s tales about love, adjusting to life in a faraway land, and losing her heart to the abandoned English pointer she rescues are warm, comic, and beautifully descriptive. I devoured this compassionate and sharply funny book in one sitting.”
--Sara Gruen, author of Water for Elephants
Learn more about the book and author at Justine van der Leun's website.

Writers Read: Justine van der Leun.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Justine van der Leun & Marcus.

--Marshal Zeringue