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Thursday, December 9, 2010

Review: Brava, Valentine by Adriana Trigiani

Brava, Valentine by Adriana Trigiani
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: Fiction
Trade paperback, 328 pages
Book Source: TLC Book Tours
My Rating: 90/100

From TLC Book Tours Home Page:

When Valentine’s grandmother begins a new life in Italy, she places Valentine and her nemesis, her brother Alfred, “the Prince,” as partners at the Angelini Shoe Company, makers of handcrafted wedding shoes since 1903. 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 unearths a long-buried family secret and finds herself torn between a past love that nurtured her and a new one that promises to sustain her, in this “dazzling” (USA Today) follow-up to Very Valentine.

My Thoughts:

Brava, Valentine picks up right where Very Valentine (my review) left off.  Trigiani doesn't skip a beat, which makes this one just as entertaining to read.  This time around there is a trip to Argentina which Trigiani describes in beautiful detail. The cityscape, the food, the atmosphere, Trigiani brings the reader along with Valentine on her trip, including her awful break-up with Gianluca.  Although to be fair, Valentine did take him for granted just a bit.

Her personal romantic failing along with those around her, makes Valentine realize that she must learn to balance her professional and personal life.  Life in general must be lived , and Valentine has two wonderful friends, Gabriel and June, who help her to see this.  Gabriel and June are awesome!  I love them both and wish I could sit down to coffee with both of them.

In Brava we find Valentine in the midst of bringing her mass market shoe design, the Bella Rosa, to production, which means working with her older brother Alfred, with whom she has never had a very good relationship.  Now that the two of them are working towards a common goal, they learn to see and accept each other for what they are.  This was a great aspect to the story and I was glad to see that these two became closer.  Family is important, especially when you are Italian.

Which brings us to another aspect of the book I liked.  When Valentine visits Buenos Aires, she makes a startling discovery about a branch of her family. Valentine accepts it and moves on, unlike some of her family members.  Valentine is an open, honest, good hearted woman, and without her, the Roncallis wouldn't be the same.  I think Valentine becomes the rock of the family that her Grandmother used to be before she moved to Italy.  Valentine truly is the heart of the family.

Overall this was a great read and would make for a great snowed-in book or beach read.  Also, you don't need to read Very Valentine first, although it would enhance your reading experience.  So if you are looking for escapism, pick up Brava, Valentine.  You will not be disappointed.

For more information about Adriana Trigiani please visit her website:

To help promote this book, Harper is also having a contest.  The prize is a 7 day tour of Italy.  Woo-hoo!  Visit this website for your chance to win:

For more reviews of Brava Valentine, please visit the master site for this web tour:

Thanks to TLC Book Tours for including me on the tour :)

2010 Challenges Met: 100+, Reading Romance


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