One Italian Summer
by Rebecca Serle
📖 | Genre: Fiction
⭐️| Rating: 3/5
📚| Review: One Italian Summer takes a page out of Rebecca Serle’s other novel, In Five Years, where the love story isn’t your typical romance. Like her previous best-selling novel, which focused on a friendship between two women, this book zeroes in on a mother-daughter relationship. Unlike In Five Years, I could not connect with the protagonist or understand her complex codependent relationship with her mother.
Katy’s grief is too much to bear after her mother dies. In an effort to feel close to her once again, she decides to take the trip to Italy the pair had planned together. Katy isn’t prepared when the magic of Positano brings her mother back to life in the form of her 30-year-old self. I absolutely loved the concept of this plot, but I feel like often times it strayed off the path to nearby distractions. The secondary storylines are about an extramarital affair and the business dealings of a beloved local hotel. There’s a lot going on and the narrative feels a little all over the place. The narrative would have been better executed if it had more of a focus.
Unfortunately, this book read more like a travel guide than it did a moving piece of fiction. The plot eventually caught up to the many chapters of character development, but the writing was not elevated enough for me. There were pages of unnecessary of dialogue and chapters felt pulled directly from a tourism website highlighting a must-do when in Positano. One Italian Summer will make you want to hop on the next flight to Italy and cure any forms of wanderlust, but I wouldn’t make a beeline to have this be your next read. Also, reader be warned, this novel will make you crave any and all Italian food. Come hungry if you decide to turn the pages and pair with a glass of red wine.