Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Book Review: "Brava, Valentine" by Adriana Trigiani

Brava, Valentine Adriana Trigiani
Paperback published: November 9, 2010
ISBN: 9780061257087
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Source: Personal Copy
Highly Recommended

Adriana Trigiani's bestselling novels are beloved by millions of readers around the world. Very Valentine, was an instant New York Timesbestseller and the first in a s­eries about the life of shoemaker Valentine Roncalli.
In this sumptuous follow-up, a once-in-a-lifetime business opportunity takes Valentine from the winding streets of Greenwich Village to the sun-kissed cobblestones of Buenos Aires, where she finds a long-buried secret hidden deep within a family scandal. Once unearthed, the truth rocks the Roncallis, while Valentine is torn between a past love that nurtured her, and a new one that promises to sustain her.
My Thoughts:
As I said in my review of the first novel in this trilogy, Very Valentine, that I messed up a bit.  Not knowing that it was the third book in the trilogy, I read The Supreme Macaroni Company first, which means that I went into both Very Valentine and Brava, Valentine knowing how everything ends up.  Because of this, I probably didn't experience this book as I should.  So, read my thoughts with that in mind.
Frankly, I love the character of Valentine.  She's irreverent, flawed, and heartfelt.  She doesn't feel like a nicely wrapped package, but rather someone you want to have as a friend.  Her family is a kick--think My Big, Fat Greek Wedding, but in Italian-American form.
Trigiani has become one of my favorite writers.  Her prose is readable and lovely.  I read this book in one day--which almost never happens for me. Even though I knew how everything would ultimately end up, it still kept my attention.
If I had to find a flaw in this book it would be that it doesn't feel like a complete story as a stand-alone novel.  You really need to read Very Valentine first and then follow it up with The Supreme Macaroni Company.  In fact, I would suggest reading The Supreme Macaroni Company immediately upon finishing this book--there is no break in time between the ending of one book and the beginning of the next.
I feel like a better review would be of the entire Valentine trilogy.  While all three books are entertaining, they really need to be read together.  Of course, I can't imagine anyone not wanting to finish the trilogy once they meet Valentine.
I was not solicited for this review and I received no compensation for this post.

Brava, Valentine
by Adriana Trigiani

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