Wednesday, January 20, 2016

[Book Review] When In Rome

When In Rome
By Amabile Giusti
Translated by Sarah Christine Varney
January 26, 2016
Chick-Lit, Contemporary Romance

I had no idea I would like this story very much! The only thing in the description that really had me sold was Luca, who is actually a writer. It's always a delight for me to read about characters who are writers and/or librarians in books, but this one was more than that. This book is like an extremely delicious banana split sundae in very generous servings after weeks of drought and starvation! It's been weeks since I've read something that thoroughly entertained me, so this book was heaven-sent. What's even more to love is that the humor included within the pages actually make sense, and there are actually lines in the story which I thought was very well-thought of.

I also really appreciate it that the plot kept me on my toes. Most of the time, I couldn't guess what was going to happen next, or what ridiculous situation Carlotta was going to be involved in. This is a rare feat considering I read almost everyday and could say for certain that I have read my fair share of predictable books and stories. Kudos to the author for this!

The heroine -- Carlotta, I think it's safe to say that she's unconventional and interesting. In a family where there is already a predetermined standard (set by her mother) in order to be treated as someone precious, it was a huge act of courage to stay being who she is. I love that she's unapologetic for her being her own person, and that she pursued her passions despite how difficult it is to do so.

The minor characters and side-stories were very interesting, too! I love that Carlotta found a group of people who are just as weird and neurotic as she was. They played a huge hand in making the story very interesting.

Now, on to Luca -- to be honest, I wasn't really sold. I enjoyed Carlotta as a character more than I enjoyed Luca. He was initially the reason why I was drawn to this book in the first place, but it was Carlotta who captured my heart. I guess Luca just didn't really measure up for me. While their romance was believable and had a stable pacing from the beginning, I would have appreciated it more if Luca did more groveling on Carlotta's feet. I think he needs to work a little harder for the girl. I mean, come on! Carlotta deserves to be treated like a goddess more than anything, you lucky piece of bagpipes! Hohum.

Also, how cool is it that the author is Greek, the book was translated into English by an American, and, read and reviewed by a Filipino? When I thought of Amazon Crossing this way, it blew my mind. This only goes to show that enjoying a story or a book is universal! Someone from the Philippines can thoroughly enjoy something that was written and set in Greece.

I would've written a 5-star rating for this book had Luca measured up, but all in all, I thoroughly enjoyed the twists and turns in this unexpected delight of a book. I definitely recommend it!

Also, this quote from the book was really neat:


As her thirtieth birthday approaches, spirited and unconventional Carlotta is a little nervous. She’s just been fired because of her irrepressible frankness, her family is a mess, and her love life is nonexistent. Plus, living in Rome isn’t cheap, so she’s forced to rent out a room in her apartment to make ends meet. 
Her new roommate, Luca, a gorgeous writer who can match her wicked sense of humor, has a lot of cons: he’s sloppy, he smokes too much, and he has a nasty habit of bringing home a different woman every night. Carlotta doesn’t want to admit it, but she’s beginning to fall for the charming novelist whose bedroom seems to have a revolving door. After they share an unexpected kiss, she’ll do anything to suppress her passion and protect her heart. With her crazy relatives and a new job to deal with, can she muster the courage to confess her true feelings? And will Carlotta find happiness in this rented romance?

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