Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Book Review - The Lovers' Guide to Rome by Mark Lamprell

Amazon UK
Title: The Lover's Guide to Rome
Author: Mark Lamprell
Format reviewed: Paperback
Source: Publisher supplied review copy
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Publication Date: 4th August 2016
Rating: 4 Stars

This gorgeous novel set around the beautiful sights of Rome tells the story of three couples and their adventures with love in the eternal city.

Young artist Alice has come to Rome for adventure and inspiration before settling down. Is there such a thing as love at first sight and how will she know if it's happening to her?

Middle-aged Meg and Alec have come to Rome to rekindle their love affair, which has faded over the years. 
Constance and Lizzie are here to scatter the ashes of Constance's beloved husband, Lizzie's brother Henry.

Rome will play a part in the lives of all these characters to make sure they find the happiness they deserve.

I was pleasantly surprised by by book, first when it appeared through my letter box without any prior warning, and secondly when I started to read it, and found I was enjoying it. The mention of Rome in the title was enough to interest me, as I love books set in a good location, and this one doesn't disappoint. 

The location details are brilliant, it really does feel a bit like a whistle stop travel guide to Rome, as you pass various large monuments. But the brilliance is in the little details, the smaller off the beaten track side to Rome, that you won't see in a travel brochure but shows how the city can present itself to all manner of people. 

It's a story featuring three main focal storylines, and as the novel progresses you can see how the stories could so easily converge through coincidence if nothing else, but through circumstance, they continue on as they are. 

The is a God like narrator to this book, which initially I thought would be off putting, but i soon grew to enjoy the voice that it gives to the book, and certainly gives the writer a distinctive style. This narrator is almost like a fate, and it seems to control the lives of people in Rome, in mysterious ways. 

Keep track of all little details that are revealed during the book, as pretty much anything insignificant could turn out to be very important, especially with hindsight! 

It is a book of three love stories, showing the different stages of a love affair through them, you have the first rush of love, when you are a bit uncertain, Alice's story, you have married life where you know each other perhaps a bit too well, Meg and Alec's story, and then there is the love that continues to prosper even after your partner has passed away, which is Constance's story. 

The Lovers' Guide to Rome is a book that works on many levels, on the surface it could be regarded as travel fiction, and yet the more you think about the book, the more larger questions will come to the surface about life, which is pretty impressive. 

I really enjoyed The Lovers' Guide to Rome with its amusing incidents as well as the more dangerous incidents that occurred, and am really glad that I had this opportunity to read this book. 

I would like to thank the all seeing power that narrates the book, for clearly being the one in charge of sending me The Lover's Guide to Rome, I would also like to thank the publisher for the review copy and assure you that this is my honest opinion. 

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