Review by Jack Foley
THE official companion to the film, Captain Corelli's Mandolin, is on a par with some of the best film guides for its attention to detail and colourful array of scenes from the movie.
Aside from telling you everything you need to know about the beautiful island of Cephallonia (the setting for the movie), the book also examines the difficult process of turning a novel into a film, while also exploring the turbulent history of the island, drawing on first-hand accounts of the years of Italian occupation during the Second World War.
There are also insights into what filming was like for the cast and crew on the island during the summer of 2000, as well as some useful tips on how to acquire a second-hand battleship at short notice (should you ever need one!).
The book also boasts a specially commissioned introduction from the author of the novel, Louis De Bernieres, who discusses what it was like seeing his book transferred to the big screen.
Fans of the film will also be suitably impressed with the numerous stills taken from the film, while historians and those with a newfound interest in the events surrounding the island and its people, will no doubt be interested in the historical photographs - many of which capture life under occupation. There is even a section devoted to the appalling massacre of the Italian troops at the hands of the Germans after their surrender.
Cynics of the movie - or those disappointed by its transfer from page to screen - will no doubt find something to object to; but for fans this is essential reading and a must-own companion.