UNBRIDLED SPIRIT: The Untold Story of the 2018 Extraordinary Palio in Siena, Italy

Now available in paperback and ebook at numerous global online retailers.

I am pleased to announce the release of my second book about Siena, the contrade, and the Palio, as of March 2020. This is available through a wide variety of retailers around the world (and on Amazon, of course). The ebook is also available, for those who prefer the digital version. For the time being, I invite enthusiasts and students of Siena to “look inside” the book on Amazon.com (click here for direct access).

Overview of the Book (back cover copy):

Once in a great while the people of Siena organize a special horse race beyond the normal Palio events of July and August. Known as a Straordinario, or Extraordinary Palio, the city’s seventeen timeless contrade (neighborhoods) reserve such events to honor only the most significant occasions, not the least being the Apollo 11 lunar landing and the turn of the millennium. Eighteen years would pass before the next Straordinario featured herein, which arguably pulled the community quite outside its comfort zone. Unbridled Spirit invites readers to dive into the locally contentious effort in October, 2018 to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the end of World War I. Upon Siena’s whirlwind decision to hold the event, Thomas Paradis visited off-season to explore the history and meanings of the war and to experience a rare October Palio that came close to not happening at all.

Whether you are a newcomer or more familiar with Siena’s Palio, Unbridled Spirit offers intriguing local stories and perspectives that help us appreciate what the Palio means to Siena, and how its people rallied to encourage a unique centenary reflection on La Grande Guerra—the Great War. 

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