Blurb from the ARC: In this contemporary family saga, the Angelini Shoe Company, makers of custom wedding shoes since 1903, is one of the last family businesses in Greenwich Village. The company is on the verge of being wiped out by the spiraling Manhattan real estate market and the overwhelming availability of factory-made goods. On the brink of disaster, the business falls on the shoulders of thirty-three-year-old Valentine Roncalli, the talented but unsuspecting apprentice, to bring her family’s old-world craftsmanship into the twenty-first century to save the company from financial ruin.
While juggling a romantic relationship with dashing chef Roman Falconi, her duty to her family, and a design competition for a prestigious department store, Valentine accompanies her grandmother and master artisan Teodora to Italy in the hopes of finding the inspiration and elements that she needs to win. There, in Tuscany and on the Isle of Capri, she discovers her artistic voice and much more, turning her life around in ways she never expected.
With a vibrant cast of memorable characters, the rich terrain of intergenerational family dynamics, the lush backgrounds of magical Manhattan and enchanting Italy as seen through the eyes of an artist, Very Valentine, the first novel in a new trilogy, is sure to be a favorite of fans and an irresistible invitation to new readers.
Adriana Trigiani is back in a big way. She has created a wonderful character in Valentine Roncalli. And the good news is that Very Valentine is the first of three books – yay! I found my visit to Valentine’s Manhattan and Capri quite enjoyable. In fact, I’m ready to book a trip to Capri. Trigiani’s attention to detail and her ability to describe in a way that doesn’t make my eyes glaze over is quite wonderful. And, at this point, she has me ready to shell out for some good Italian leather flats.
What has me impatient for the second book is the story of Valentine. She is a real and relatable character. I can’t wait to see which direction her life takes in the next installment.
Watch for the release of Very Valentine this February 2009. You can read more about the author and her previous books here.
My thanks to Adriana Trigiani and HarperCollins for sending the ARC.