Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
This was no cold marble—this was a man! Antonia goes to Tuscany to rebuild her life. The last thing she wants to do is fall in love, least of all with rich, arrogant, aristocratic Lorenzo.
Librarian Antonia Gray has fled England for northern Tuscany after an unhappy love affair to work on the archive of a 17th century Italian explorer, a member of a centuries-old aristocratic family. There she meets his descendent, Lorenzo Quattromani, rich, arrogant, handsome—and engaged to the beautiful and ruthless Giselle. The last thing Antonia wants is to fall in love, least of all with someone so dangerous. His engagement, though, is not what it seems, and Lorenzo breaks down Antonia’s resistance. But Giselle has other ideas.
Escape to glorious Tuscany in this romance! Actually, I also suggest you ignore the cover as the heroine in this story is Antonia who is actually something akin to sleeping beauty, a shy, quiet, reticent librarian who has been seriously let down by love. She has escaped from England to work with a septuagenarian member of the Italian aristocracy researching and cataloguing her archive of materials relating to an ancestor, a 17th century explorer. The quiet of their lives is shattered by the arrival of the old lady’s nephew, Lorenzo Quattromani, and his fiancee, Giselle. Giselle is a cold hearted, Swiss beauty who is determined to show her superiority in denigrating Antonia from the moment she arrives, Lorenzo has a similar attitude. He’s handsome and he knows it, he’s not used to anyone turning him down . . . . However, not all is as it initially seems and as romance blossoms between him and Antonia, Giselle has plans of her own to thwart theirs.
The vivid, descriptive style of Kate Zarrelli’s writing brings the Tuscan countryside to life. I also liked how she had historical threads about the Fascists and Partisans who lived in the area during the Second World War skilfully interwoven into the story, adding to the multi-deminsional picture of the the people and events. She shares details of the dilemmas of both Lorenzo and Antonia in a manner which makes them easy to relate to and empathise with. As for the old Countess – she’s a real star, a brilliant lady in every sense of the word. There’s love, romance, dreams and nightmare scenarios in this story and I certainly hadn’t anticipated everything being thrown into turmoil again just when you thought everything was sorted!
This is an engaging read with a fabulous setting, well developed characters, intriguing twists, shock revelations and steamy romance that I enjoyed escaping into. I requested and was gifted a copy of this book and this is my honest review after choosing to read it.
Kate Zarrelli is the romance and erotica pen-name of Katherine Mezzacappa. Kate is Irish but now lives in Carrara in Northern Tuscany, between the Apuan Alps and the Tyrrhenian Sea, with her Italian husband and two teenage sons. She writes historical, erotic, feel-good and paranormal fiction, set all over Europe, and in her spare time volunteers with a used book charity of which she is a founder member. You can follow her on Facebook at Kate Zarrelli books or on Twitter @katmezzacappa.
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Many thanks to Rachel’s Random Resource for materials for this post and organising the tour it is part of. The review is my own, honest opinion after choosing to read this delightful story!