Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Book Review - Summer on the Italian Lakes by Lucy Coleman

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Amazon UK
Title: Summer on the Italian Lakes
Author: Lucy Coleman
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Aria
Publication Date: 5th February 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

Bestselling Brianna Middleton has won the hearts of millions of readers with her sweeping - and steamy - love stories. But the girl behind the typewriter is struggling... Not only does she have writer's block, but she's a world-famous romance author with zero romance in her own life.

So the opportunity to spend the summer teaching at a writer's retreat in an idyllic villa on the shores of Lake Garda - owned by superstar author Arran Jamieson - could this be just the thing to fire up Brie's writing - and romantic - mojo?

Brie's sun-drenched Italian summer could be the beginning of this writer's very own happy-ever-after...

This has to be a dream book for a book lover, or anyone with any sorts of writing aspirations, or those who love Italy, or sexy heroes, or just an all around fabulous story. 

I have no idea where to start in waxing lyrical about all aspects of this book,  I really don't think I could fault anything. 

I mean Brie is a romance writer that verges more towards the hot and steamy side of things, but her real life persona is a lot quieter, she is struggling after a rather high profile break up, to the extent her friends and family need to stage an intervention. 

Throughout the book we get to know a lot about her writing process, and how the characters come to life in her head. She is writing two  books at the same time, and gets involved in another one too, so that is a lot of Brie's fictional characters we get to know as she writes her books. 

Thankfully, unlike some books where authors are the main characters, there isn't a full book within a book style approach here, which I am grateful of, as I always find it confusing, and besides hearing about the creative process was far more interesting to me. 

The book really gets going when she takes over last minute as a teacher on a writing retreat for a month in Lake Garda, Italy.  Such a stunning inspirational location, and the Villa which is so central to the story is owned by the rather more academic author Arran, who is not at all like Brie was imagining. 

I loved getting to know the participants for the first week of the writing retreat, and also learning all about Arran too. Not to mention the gorgeous backdrop, interesting information about publishing from some of the workshops, plus Carrie - both Brie and Arran's agent,  the Italian food, the couple of planned excursions. 

And yet you may be thinking I'm portraying a rather simple book - but that couldn't be further from the truth as both Arran and Brie are complex characters, with all manner of things in their backgrounds that are influencing how they are. 

Plus Arran is instrumental to so many of they key story lines.   I couldn't get enough of our pair of authors, and was always eager to return, when real life dragged me away from the book. 

Words... or at least my words can not do this book justice. You really need go read it for yourself to fully enjoy its wonderfulness! 

Thank you to Netgalley and Aria for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

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