Can Samantha and Keirnan find the jewels in time to save his sister? What became of the tragic Serafina and how are the two stories connected? Do the Jewels of the Madonna even exist and, if so, what has become of them?
Monday, September 28, 2009
The Treasures of Venice by Loucinda McGary
The Treasures of Venice by Loucinda McGary
Sourcebooks - Romance/Adventure - both modern and historical
The Treasures of Venice is not my typical fare (although I don't scorn romance -- there are some excellent romance writers out there) but Sourcebooks accidentally sent me the wrong book and I love it when that happens. Reading a book that is a little outside your normal comfort zone gives you a chance to shake up your reading a bit -- always a good thing, in my opinion.
The Treasures of Venice is an adventurous tale. Samantha Lewis was dumped by her fiance just prior to their scheduled wedding. Instead of canceling her honeymoon, she decided to go ahead and journey to Venice. The book opens with Samantha sitting in a Venice cafe, musing about the betrayal that brought her to Italy alone. When a handsome Irish rogue, Keirnan Fitzgerald, shows up at an outdoor cafe pretending to be her boyfriend, she plays along. His sister has been kidnapped and he must obtain a set of missing jewels in order to save her life.
In 1485, the lovely Serafina Lombardo falls for a painter who can barely afford to feed himself. Nino wants to take her away from Venice to begin a new life with her. But, there is only one way he can possibly save her and Nino quickly finds that it's difficult knowing who to trust.
There are a lot of romantic cliches in this book but I was simply in the mood to ignore that and enjoy the adventure. And, I think it was a rollicking fine adventure story -- a little over-the-top, yes, but if you're just looking for an escape, The Treasures of Venice fits the bill.
3.5/5 - Action-packed romance. Be willing to let go of reality and just enjoy the adventure. I'd particularly recommend this one to romance fans but if you're like me and don't mind tossing in something a little different I think you'll find it's a great escapist read. There are some fairly graphic sex scenes but they're usually pretty brief (about a page, as opposed to pages and pages with heavy detail).
Thanks to Danielle at Sourcebooks for being such a total sweetie-pie when things go a little hinky!! Danielle, you're the greatest!
In other news . . .
Oh, baby, this is so big. I mean this is HUGE. Simon Van Booy has won the Franklin O'Connor Short Story Award for Love Begins in Winter!!!! If you've read my blog for any length of time, you know I'm an adoring fan of Simon and his work. His writing is absolutely breathtaking and he is tremendously kind and humble for a man of such talent and genius (see my 2007 chat with Simon, here).
And, to everyone else . . . it's time. If you've missed out on the beauty of Simon's writing, give in. Go buy a copy of Love Begins in Winter. You won't regret it.
Just walked in:
Mama's Got a FAKE I.D. by Caryn Rivadeneira - a book I accepted for review because the author made me laugh. And, it looks terrific, so I'm glad I said, "Oh, all right. Just because I like you."
Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger - a total surprise from Simon & Schuster . . . which is probably going to get shoved to the head of the queue because I have been so dying to read this book and it's the season for ghost stories, after all, isn't it?
Because I am a weak, weak bibliophile:
The Measure of a Lady by Deeanne Gist and Found by Margaret Peterson Haddix ended up in a red plastic bag, dangling from my wrist, this afternoon. I told Kiddo it was dangerous taking me into the bookstore, but did he listen???? Okay, can't blame the kid. I know that.
I don't know if I'll have time to post about Banned Books Week, since we're still in the thick of swim season, we're "remodeling" our kitchen (very slowly -- it's a DIY thing, right now involving paint, a drill, door handles, doors, hinges, wood glue and a lot of sweat), painting our den and trying to level the floor while we await our carpet, and you know . . . the other stuff people do. If we didn't have to eat or wash clothing or sleep, it would really help.
Happy Monday, everybody!!