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Publisher's Summary

The fateful first meeting of Enza and Ciro takes place amid the haunting majesty of the Italian Alps at the turn of the last century. Still teenagers, they are separated when Ciro is banished from his village and sent to hide in New York's Little Italy, apprenticed to a shoemaker, leaving a bereft Enza behind. But when her own family faces disaster, she, too, is forced to emigrate to America. Though destiny will reunite the star-crossed lovers, it will, just as abruptly, separate them once again - sending Ciro off to serve in World War I, while Enza is drawn into the glamorous world of the opera . . . and into the life of the international singing sensation Enrico Caruso. Still, Enza and Ciro have been touched by fate - and, ultimately, the power of their love will change their lives forever .

A riveting historical epic of love and family, war and loss, risk and destiny, inspired by the author's own family history, The Shoemaker's Wife is the novel Adriana Trigiani was born to write.

©2012 The Glory of Everything Company (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    626
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    119
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    25
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    20

Performance

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    56
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    18
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Story

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Beth Anne
  • Philadelphia, PA, United States
  • 01-04-14

truly disappointing and unbelievable love story

i really did not like this book....but i stuck it out to the end just to see if it would live up to the rave reviews of everyone i know. for me, it didn't.

it's hard to explain, but i felt like this book was so long and so wordy...but actually said nothing. i think it tried to tell so much, over so much time, that it couldn't really delve into any one moment in the story or into any real details about the characters so that the reader could dig in and get involved. the whole time i read this, i felt like i was floating above the story...and watching it happen in such a cursory way...but i was never able to get inside the story, experiencing it, feeling it, caring about it.

the other big flaw that i found with the novel is that i did not believe in the tragic "love story" that was supposed to be the center of this book. it didn't seem like there was real urgency or emotion or any type of drive to compel the reader to root for these two to finally get together. neither one of these two (Enza or Ciro) were all that likeable. i guess Enza had more redeeming qualities than Ciro...but i didn't really care about either one of them. and i certainly had no investment in their relationship. i felt like there was this big lead up to them finally getting together, but honestly, i didn't care if they did or not.

truly disappointing.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Barbara
  • Pennsylvania,USA
  • 04-22-14

Lovely story written in Adriana Trigiani style.

What made the experience of listening to The Shoemaker's Wife the most enjoyable?

This was a beautiful love story that had sadness, as in real life, but overall had much goodness and kindness. Several times when I thought, "oh no" someone is going to die, cheat, etc...it didn't really happen thus the twists and turns were believable and natural.Trigiani gives such beautiful images of Italy that I am anxious to return!

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Joelene
  • MECHANICSBURG, PA, United States
  • 10-08-12

Love Story!

Would you consider the audio edition of The Shoemaker's Wife to be better than the print version?

Did not read the print version

What other book might you compare The Shoemaker's Wife to and why?

Similar to other Trigiani novels but apparently much was based on her ancestors' story.

Which character – as performed by Orlagh Cassidy – was your favorite?

not one in particular - did think the accent sounded authentic though

Any additional comments?

Enjoyed the vivid descriptions of scenery and the Met.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Unlike everyone else, I disliked this book

What would have made The Shoemaker's Wife better?

The Shoemaker's Wife has a promising plot which fails to fulfill its potential. By the middle of the book, I was completely tired of the perfection of the characters. It is a very sappy story. We did this book in my book group, and many members did like it - and it seemed to me that those who liked it were those whose families had a similar immigrant story. Those of us who did not share that history seemed to dislike the book. I believe the book would have been better if it were not so sweet and full of perfect people.

What do you think your next listen will be?

Justin Cronin's The Passage.

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

I thought the narrator had a very good accent. However, as an Italian speaker myself, I found her mispronunciations of place names, particularly Bergamo, off-putting. Otherwise, I thought she did a pretty good job.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Relief when I finished it.

Any additional comments?

Honestly, this is one of the worst books I've ever listened to. I'm baffled by the good reviews.

19 of 23 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great life story-great narrator

If you could sum up The Shoemaker's Wife in three words, what would they be?

Love family country

What other book might you compare The Shoemaker's Wife to and why?

Sarah's Key. I couldn't put it down. I like the independent stories going along with the main story.

What does Orlagh Cassidy bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

She was marvelous! I loved the accents. I really believed the characters and their feelings and personalities were obvious.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

Any additional comments?

Excellent narrator!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • B.
  • FOUNTAINVILLE, PA, United States
  • 11-14-12

Fabulous

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This story was sensational. It covered so many fascinating years and so much history in a thrilling and romantic way. The characters are unforgettable and utterly believable. I thoroughly enjoyed this work and was greatly moved by many passages. The reader had a terrific voice which made it all the more special. I highly recommend this audible.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Enza: She was a brave and generous girl who grew into a loving wife and mother. She was also a generous, loyal friend.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

I don't know but it would make a wonderful movie

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Outstanding!

I loved this story and the narrator was outstanding. I felt like I was back in Italy and loved every minute of it. I will be sure to read the rest of this author's books and hope I get to listen to Orlagh Cassidy again.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Nice story but I wanted to jump out of my skin sometimes

The book started out interesting but as time went on the never-ending descriptions of the characters' thoughts ruined it; they just went on and on.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Long But Good

This book is more of a love story than anything else, but I really enjoyed hearing about the main characters’ lives as they were growing up in Italy, and after they arrived in the U.S. Being Italian immigrants, they certainly worked hard and had to deal with so much abuse and mistreatment from employers and society as a whole. Loved that they found their way back to each other! Sad at times, especially near end of story. Narration was actually pretty good!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • allison
  • Hempstead, NY, United States
  • 04-13-15

Loved this book! Excellent story.

If you could sum up The Shoemaker's Wife in three words, what would they be?

I want to go to Italy! Well written. Almost want to long for the days of past in early 1900s Italy and New York. Couldn't stop listening. It was beautifully narrated by Orlagh Cassidy.

Have you listened to any of Orlagh Cassidy’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

N/A

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Some moments made me cry.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful