Today is my stop on the blog tour for An Italian Affair by Caroline Montague. A book I have thoroughly enjoyed and can’t wait for all of you to read!
Italy, 1937. Alessandra Durante is grieving the loss of her husband when she discovers she has inherited her ancestral family seat, Villa Durante, deep in the Tuscan Hills. Longing for a new start, she moves from her home in London to Italy with her daughter Diana and sets about rebuilding her life.
What a brilliant historical fiction! It is hard to believe this is Caroline Montague’s first novel. What an impressive debut!
An Italian Affair tells the story of Alessandra Durante, who is grieving the loss of her husband, moves back to her ancestral family home in Tuscan, Italy with her daughter Diana, while her son Robert continues to finish his education in England. With fascism on the rise, their estate in Italy has become so much more than just a home for Alessandra and her daughter. It is in Tuscan where Alessandra meets Davide, a young man who has captured her heart. With war approaching, all three members of the Durante family play important roles of helping each other survive this traumatic time.
On the face of it, An Italian Affair seems to be a love story. Yes Romance is part of it but it is so much more! It is such a rich, carefully crafted and adventurous read. What I love most about this book is the author doesn’t just focus on the character development and the arc of Alessandra, we also get to know and follow the journeys of Diana and Robert. The changes the three of them have gone through individually over the years, both before the war and during the war, have given us immense insights of how this family works; and how in the face of adversity they all come together as a family. I really think the build up of the story and the alternation between the events happen in England and Italy are perfectly executed.
The author has written An Italian Affair with beautiful prose. The description of the scenery in Tuscan makes me want to pay a visit straight away. The dialogues between the characters are so constructed and believable. It is such an engrossing read. An Italian Affair is one of those stories that is so satisfying that you would want more of it after you finish reading.
Again, this is such an impressive debut that I have thoroughly enjoyed! I would recommend this to anyone who loves historical fiction or just loves a fulfilling read.
Thank you so much Alainna and Orion Books for gifting me this beautiful copy to review!
About The Author:
Caroline won her first National Poetry competition at 10 years old and from that moment dreamed of being a writer. After juggling motherhood with modelling assignments, she founded an Interior Design Company working on many projects in the UK and abroad. Her second marriage to the widowed Conroy Harrowby brought four stepchildren into her life, giving her a wider audience for her imaginative bedtime stories. As a family they all live at the Harrowby ancestral home, Burnt Norton, which famously inspired T S Eliot to write the first of his “Four Quartets”. At last Caroline has the time to fulfil her dream of becoming a full-time author.