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The Villa  By  cover art

The Villa

By: Rosanna Ley
Narrated by: Anna Bentinck
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Publisher's Summary

Set against the rugged coast of Sicily, debut novelist Rosanna Ley creates a lush multigenerational story in The Villa - an epic journey of love lost, family secrets, the road to self-discovery, and the meaning of home and family.

When Tess Angel receives a letter informing her she has inherited the Villa Sirena, perched on a clifftop in Sicily - she is stunned. Her only link to the small, beautiful island is through her mother, Flavia, who left Sicily during World War II and has not spoken to her family, or of her life there, since.

Initially resistant to Tess traveling to her home country, Flavia begins to recount her youth, told in flashbacks as she writes in a journal to Tess of her journey to independence as well as leaving her legacy of cherished family recipes and secrets. Secrets including a lost treasure rumored to be hidden in the very Villa Tess is staying at.

Told in alternating points of view between Tess, Flavia, and Tess' teenage daughter, Ginny, who is dealing with her blooming sexuality and filled with questions that she longs to ask her long-absent father.

©2014 Rosanna Ley (P)2015 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"Beautifully written, warm and romantic.... The perfect holiday read." (Rachel Hore, author of A Gathering Storm)
"A warm and passionate story that is as beguiling as the aromatic tastes and scents of Sicily itself.... Richly written, always engrossing. The perfect summer read." (Kate Furnivall, author of The White Pearl)
" The Villa will stay with you long after you've devoured this tale of family feuds, secrets, and passion, Sicilian-style.... Romantic, escapist, and mouthwatering, it has everything you could wish for in a summer read. Delicious." (Veronica Henry, author of The Beach Hut)

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Entertaining romance with a background of intrigue

I really enjoyed this book, although it took me about a chapter or so to get into it. At first it was a little confusing, but as I read along, I understood that it was actually the story of three generations of women… Grandmother, mother, And daughter. The story is rooted in two countries… Italy and England. It follows a young Sicilian girl as she grows up and leaves her roots, moving to England to find her true love once again. Years later, her own daughter harass the Villa where her mother grew up. So she travels to Sicily to see what she has inherited. Her mother does not want to return to Sicily, and she gives mysterious reasons. While in Sicily, the daughter meets up with her mothers childhood friend along with the descendants of a long-standing family feud. The story involves a lost treasure, a murder, the mafia, and other oddities of life in Sicily. It’s a great book for summer reading, not terribly demanding, but entertaining engrossing. My only criticism is that the person reading the story tries to imitate Italian accents but doesn’t quite get it. Sometimes her accent sounds more Middle Eastern and Italian. For me that was a distraction.It would’ve been better if she had not tried to speak with an accent.

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  • JP
  • 04-14-17

Heartwarming!!

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

This story gives you a little of everything... love, friendship, mystery, history, escape, risk, betrayal, loyalty, and power of love within the bonds of family. It was wonderfully written and beautifully narrated. I had a smile on my face the entire time.