A mysterious stranger known as 'The Wolf' leaves an infant with the sisters of Santo Spirito. A tiny silver key hidden in her wrappings is the only clue to the child's identity and so begins a story as intriguing and beautiful as the city of Florence itself. Belinda Alexandra's new novel, Tuscan Rose, is set in Italy during the time of Mussolini. This richly woven tale of passion, love, longing, witchcraft and magic promises to be everything her readers love and more.
©2010 Belinda Alexandra (P)2010 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
This was my first Belinda Alexandra book & I am so very impressed I have gotten into her other titles. For me this book gives me strength, no matter what life throws at you, it is nothing the strong girl in this book & her friends are dealt don't take within their stride. A gripping tale of a young Ophan living through the horrors of being wrongly accused in the age of fascism and surviving the war through the eyes of the Florentine Italians. Your credit will not be wasted with this great story.
this was a great book i really got into it was sorry when it finished but was also very sad about all the awful things that people indured during the wars.
What started out immediately as an interesting premise with enormous possibilities all too soon devolved into a minute description of how a woman feels about everything, from seeing herself in a mirror the first time to becoming thirsty after breast-feeding. The plot dragged and any theme was soon lost. It became a chore to listen, and finally was laid to rest unfinished. An abridged version might work with significant editing.
Of course! I really loved it. I think it is interesting to read a book that is set in Mussolini's Italy and the characters and their relationships between them is beautifully described. I was sad when the book ended.
I liked that it was set in Italy before and during the war. I am a history teacher, and thus very interested in history. This story told about an era that has been described in many books, but I have never read one from Mussolini's Italy.
Yes! More than one, but I can't reveal them because it would reveal too much of the story and parts of the ending. But this is a story set in times of war, and many of the main characters are partisans. It goes without saying that they experience both dramatic and sad moments.
This book absolutely captivated and broke my heart all at the same time. We have all learned the history of dictatorships in school but I think it's rather eye opening to put a more personal spin on how an average person may have lived under the regime of one. This book explores Italy in the time of Mussolini with strong heroine who struggles as an orphan raised in a convent, enemy of the state, unwed mother, war nurse, and freedom fighter... Her character is so well thought out and developed that you can't help to walk the journey she is on even though at times, it's devastating. The historic facts well researched all seem so plausible which I think is what makes the book so heavy. Also, it fascinates me to understand how other countries were impacted by world events such as WWII. There was some mysticism to the book as well that was not over the top and kind of cool.
My only complaints were that the narrator was reading somewhere near a train and you often heard it's horn which was distracting. I also didn't like one of the plot twists about the mother of our heroine, i just didn't think it was necessary.
This was another excellent read of a Belinda Alexandra novel and kept me absorbed throughout the entire story. It was well researched and depicted this era of Catholicism in Italy with great accuracy. Rosa’s lack of knowledge about sexuality would have been very common for a child brought up in a convent as an orphan at that time. This story is inspirational portraying Rosa as a young woman who developed the strength and endurance to face extreme hardships and injustice which were prevalent pre WW2 and during the war for working class impoverished young women. Rosa suffered the harsh prejudices of being a single mother that was typical of those times when in fact she was a rape victim but desperate to love and care for her baby. Interestingly Alexandra weaves in a similar vegetarian theme to the one in her Silver Wattle novel. Highly recommended.
One reviewer made an excellent point about the education of Rosa but who nothing of childbirth. However, I have enjoyed every minute of the book. It's an easy listen. I don't mean to imply it's like a Harlequin Romance (ick) but it moves along very well. You become anxious to see what happens to Rosa next.
I know a bit about WWII history but not enough about Italy during that time. This book makes me want to do some research about WWII Italy.
Somehow I was led to this book after reading and thoroughly enjoying Kate Morton's book The House at Riverton. But there is no comparison. The beginning is intriguing. An infant girl, Rosa, is left at a nunnery. She is raised by the sisters and fifteen years later she leaves to become governess for the daughter of a wealthy Italian family at the time when Mussolini is coming into power. That she has some connection to this family is immediately obvious. From there on it is amazingly contradictory. While she displays seemingly great knowledge of child rearing, Pythagoras, music, language and philosophy, she is apparently ignorant of how babies are conceived and born. This becomes obvious after Rosa is wrongly jailed because of an accusation that Rosa aided another servant in aborting her child, by the evil step mother (an Italian noble woman by marriage) of her charge . Rosa is in jailed for ,over a year and is raped by one of her jailers. She doesn't realize she is pregnant until another inmate clues her in. This is 3 hours into the story. I kept trying but was so bored an irritated by both the writing and the plot I had to stop. For me a wasted credit. I prefer more subtlety and realism..
I love Caroline Lee as a narrator -- she's one of my faves! I picked this book because I had listened to The Silver Wattle and found it to be an interesting book. Yes, Belinda Alexandra is a talented writer, but I couldn't get past the "in your face" animal rights/vegetarian agenda. Give me a break! I constantly found myself rolling my eyes. It was a prominent theme in The Silver Wattle, but in this story it's just ridiculous. I stopped listening after hearing the line, "I'm seeing the spirits that have been killed to satisfy people's vanity and gluttony... the church taught that animals didn't have souls or personalities, which is why Christians didn't have any qualms about killing them."
Give me a break. Humans were meant to eat meat -- the reason we have incisor teeth. A few lines here and there or a statement as part of the dialog is one thing. But the book has too much of this crap. I won't be listening to a Belinda Alexandra again. I listen for enjoyment, not to be swayed by a political or social agenda.
I will, however, be looking for other Caroline Lee narrated novels...
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