IT and US: Bilingual book connects Italian-American kids to their roots

Dec 17, 2017 975

Author Valeria Fanelli launches her first book on bilingualism. “Why don’t Mamma and I speak the same language?” is a publication written both in Italian and English, dedicated to all kids whose parents have moved to the U.S. from Italy and have decided to pass their linguistic heritage to their children. Gianni loves the way he and his mom communicate. They can use two languages and they always understand each other. But, why don’t they always speak the same language? 

This book answers children's most asked questions about being bilingual. The story of Gianni is also the story of Giuseppe, Giuliana, Leonardo, Luciana, Alessandro, Lucas and many other children whose family members moved to the United States and share the same Italian roots. This book represents an introspection on modern immigration through an early language perception and assimilation experience. 

The beautifully illustrated book alternates phrases in Italian and English that keep the interaction between the boy and his mother authentic and original. The book ends with a poem in Italian that remarks the affection that many immigrant families feel for their home country. A coloring book where kids can create their own stories and dialogues is also included in the publication. 

Valeria Fanelli is an author, journalist and teacher who has lived between Italy, Spain and the United States. By being in touch with the Italian-American community of Chicago she has learned the difficulties that children experience, but also the beauty of growing up bilingual. During her career as a journalist she has published several journalism pieces on International affairs and immigration, but her love and experience with children has inspired her to write her first book on bilingualism. 

“Why don’t Mamma and I speak the same language?” is available on For more information, visit:

You may be interested