When Katy's mother dies, she is left reeling. To make matters worse, the mother-daughter trip of a lifetime looms: two weeks in Positano. Katy has been waiting years for Carol to take her, and now she is faced with embarking on the adventure alone. But as soon as she steps foot on the beautiful Amalfi Coast, Katy begins to feel her mother's spirit. And then Carol appears for real—in the flesh, healthy and sun-tanned ... and 30 years old. Over the course of her time in Italy, Katy gets to know Carol in this new form, and soon she must reconcile the mother who knew everything with the young woman who does not yet have a clue.
Yes, you’ll want to keep reading to figure out what is happening and, yes, you’ll have to suspend belief to enjoy the story but in these cynical times full of snark and memes, it’s nice to surrender to magic every now and then. Plus, the wanderlust that the book conjures is worth it as is ... One Italian Summer is a story about love, loss and that point in adulthood where we learn our parents are human, too, and not always perfect.
Serle deftly immerses readers into the landscape and evokes feelings of rest and recovery. But the novel details more than an escape from grief. It asks how one picks the life they want ... Serle does not dwell on the time slip but adroitly uses it to allow mother and daughter to connect and reconnect ... Going down as easy as a limoncello on a hot summer’s day, this daydream of a story affirms what it means to love and be loved. An enchanting book for the last cold days of winter, but also suggest it to readers come summer.
A sumptuous and sensuous feast of a book ... On a deeper level, Serle’s novel is a savvy meditation on the necessity of change and how roles shape what we see of each other ... One Italian Summer isn’t just about wild oats and adventure either—it’s about knowing yourself ... For readers open to moral complexities, One Italian Summer is a thoughtful, fun escape, blending contemplations of love and loss with a touch of adventure. It’s also a beautiful tribute to the pleasures of Italian culture.