Abut the book:
New York Times bestselling author Adriana Trigiani takes us from the cobblestone streets of Greenwich Village to lush New Orleans to Italy and back again, from the tricky dynamics between Old World craftsmanship and New World ambition, all amid a passionate love affair that fuels one woman's determination to have it all.
For more than one hundred years, the Angelini Shoe Company in Greenwich Village has relied on the leather produced by Vechiarelli & Son in Tuscany. This ancient business partnership provides a twist of fate for Valentine Roncalli, the schoolteacher-turned-shoemaker, to fall in love with Gianluca Vechiarelli, a tanner with a complex past . . . and a secret.
But after the wedding celebrations are over, Valentine wakes up to the reality of juggling the demands of a new business and the needs of her new family. Confronted with painful choices, Valentine remembers the wise words that inspired her in the early days of her beloved Angelini Shoe Company: "A person who can build a pair of shoes can do just about anything." Now the proud, passionate Valentine is going to fight for everything she wants and savor all she deserves—the bitter and the sweet of life itself.
My thoughts: I was a little worried that having not read the other books featuring these characters might hamper my enjoyment of the book, but it didn't seem to. I think enough of what happened in the past was reviewed and mentioned that it was not an issue. This book easily stood on it's own.
Valentine loves her work and spends many hours creating custom shoes. She loves her life and her Italian family. When she decides to marry Gianluca her plan is to keep everything the same in her work life. She resists his idea that they move to Italy and live near his family, wanting to stay in the same apartment and workspace her grandparents used to build up the shoe business. From the start of the marriage, just six or seven weeks after the proposal, she has doubts about it. Did they rush things? Was she a fool to believe that things would stay the same? Is having a husband trying to protect her really what she wants? Gianluca has been married before and is close lipped about why he and his first wife divorced and she worries that they might be headed down the same path.
A lot of the worries and joys that Valentine experiences are ones that all of us can relate to. How do we maintain our own independence and self while also creating a partnership and sharing with a spouse or loved one? How much should you compromise and how much do you need to insist on keeping things one way? What does it really mean to love?
- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: Harper Paperbacks; Reprint edition (May 6, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062136593
- ISBN-13: 978-0062136596