Brava, Valentine: A Novel
By Adriana Trigiani
This is definitely a beach read. If you have not read Very Valentine, Trigiani’s first book in this trilogy you really should before reading this one. I note that I said in my blog title I don’t read romance but this novel is sure close to a romance if not one. What I do like about her writing are her characters. The characters are stereotyped but to me very funny. Valentine is the unmarried, career minded daughter in an extended Italian-American family. No angst here, her writing is respectful and loving towards this culture. I find myself smiling and sometimes laughing at the family dynamics. The Thanksgiving dinner scene is a train wreck. I love her humor. I enjoyed the descriptions of the hand made shoe industry – who knew- that you could go and have shoes made just for you! There are descriptions of clothes, interior design and other aesthetic items, all lost on me! The novel includes tough topics, death, infidelity, racism, lost loves, economic distress but as in any good, unchallenging read all is right in the end. I will no doubt read the last part of the trilogy when it is published. I’d recommend this if you like authors such as Maeve Binchy and Jan Karon then you’ll surely like Trigiani’s books. If you like them there are plenty more to read.