From the bestselling author of The Obituary Writer comes the stirring multigenerational story of an Italian family.
An Italian Wife opens in turn-of-the-century Italy, when young Josephine Rimaldi is forced to follow her new husband to America in an arranged marriage and finds herself in a strange country with a man she doesn't know or love.
Bound by tradition, she gives birth to seven children; the last, conceived in a passionate affair, Josephine must give up for adoption. Josephine spends the rest of her life searching for this child, keeping her secret even as her other children, whose stories unfold in surprising ways, go off to war, get married, and make their own mistakes: Her son suffers in World War I. Her daughter struggles to assimilate in the new world of the 1950s American suburbs. And her granddaughters experiment with the sex, drugs, and rock and roll of the 1970s.
Poignant, sensual, and deeply felt, An Italian Wife is a sweeping and evocative portrait of a family bound by love and heartbreak.
©2014 Ann Hood (P)2014 Blackstone Audio
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The synopsis promised a sweeping 70-year family saga with a secret about a child put up for adoption – juicy! But it was not even close to good.
It was a series of vignettes with no point; they did not relate to each other nor back to the premise in the synopsis. Another reviewer wrote that it was “a series of short stories about naive women and their sex lives”. That made me laugh out loud! So true! Over and over I found myself thinking “here we go again!” it was so gratuitous that it was became preposterous and the author’s clear fetish for breasts was just weird.
By the time I was half way done with the book, I was fed up: yet another inane vignette, yet another pointless sex scene… and endless boobs. Boobs boobs boobs boobs boobs. It was ridiculous.
I kept going because I wanted to know what happened to the daughter that was put up for adoption, but I was listening in triple speed to get it over with. The lying synopsis said that: Josephine spends the rest of her life searching for her lost child – well if she did, that was in another book!
Oh God! Where to begin with this one? If we had just stuck to the main character all the way through, I would have given it five stars. But, as it is, it was very confusing most of the time. Too many characters, too many narratives, too many jumps back and forth between timelines. On the upside, each narrative was beautifully written in its own way. This story is like one giant web of narratives of a large number of characters that tie back to one common place..., the center: Josefina. What a story... ¡Qué historietas!
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