A Dream of Italy by Nicky Pellegrino – Review by @mgriffiths163

Today Mandie takes over again with a blog tour review of A Dream of Italy by Nicky Pellegrino. Thank to publisher, Orion, for providing an advance copy for review. Here’s what the book is about:

Source: Netgalley

About the Book

For sale: historic building in the picturesque town of Montenello, southern Italy. Asking price: 1 Euro

Cloudless skies, sun-soaked countryside, delicious food… In the drowsy heat of an Italian summer, four strangers arrive in a beautiful town nestled in the mountains of Basilicata, dreaming of a new adventure. An innovative scheme by the town’s Mayor has given them the chance to buy a crumbling historic building for a single Euro – on the condition that they renovate their home within three years, and help to bring new life to the close-knit local community.

Elise is desperate to get on the property ladder. Edward wants to escape a life he feels suffocated by. Mimi is determined to start afresh after her divorce. And there’s one new arrival whose true motives are yet to be revealed…

For each of them, Montenello offers a different promise of happiness. But can they turn their dream of Italy into reality? A deliciously escapist summer read, perfect for fans of Jo Thomas.

Available from: Amazon | Kobo | Waterstones | Googleplay | Apple Books

Mandie’s Thoughts

Over the last few years there have been quite a few instances of old villages in mountainous areas trying to rejuvenate and reinvigorate the population by offering their abandoned houses for very low prices. A Dream of Italy by Nicky Pellegrino has taken this concept and brought it to life in her book.

Mayor of Montenello, Salvio Valentini decides that he wants to bring the hillside town back to life by selling off some of the vacant houses. Putting an add online he starts with just four properties that the previous owners had agreed to sell, he is surprised by the interest and number of applications. With the help of his assistant Augusto he finds three potential tenants. The final property is taken by one of the descendants of the original owner much to Augusto’s displeasure. As to why he is not happy with this turn of events you will really have to read the book as I am not going to give it away.

Each of the potential residents has their own reasons for applying to become a resident…Mimi is escaping her failed marriage and sees it as an opportunity to reinvent her life and do something just for her for once, Edward wants to try to recapture the closeness with his partner Gino, plus he sees it as a chance for Gino to reconnect with his history as Montenello is the town that his parents emigrated from and Elise sees it as a way for her and her partner Richard to finally be able to get on the property ladder.

Nicky Pellegrino has created a truly heart-warming book with characters that you can connect with and a location that has you wanting to put down the one euro cost and follow that dream for yourself. As the book goes between each of the new residents and its mayor, I found myself easily drawn in following as they forged new lives and new friendships and constantly wanting proper Italian food. It was nice to see the villagers the newcomers and embrace the changes to the community. I will admit that I was glad when Elise decided to go it alone without Richard and strike out alone and I loved Salvio’s mother Donna Carmela as she managed to convince people to stay and do a little matchmaking along the way.

A Dream of Italy is a great holiday read that will keep you engaged right to the end. Although this is the first book I have read by this author I can see me checking out other books that she has written.

About the Author

When Nicky Pellegrino’s Italian father came to England he fell in love with and married a Liverpool girl. He brought to his new family his passion for food and instilled in them what all Italians know – that you live to eat instead of eating to live. This Italian mantra is the inspiration behind Nicky’s delicious novels. When Nicky met and married a New Zealander she moved to Auckland where she works as a journalist and edits a woman’s magazine.

Author Links: Twitter | Website

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