Reviews for Shoemaker's Wife


Booklist Reviews 2012 March #1
As the twentieth century begins, two teenagers living in the Italian Alps, Enza and Ciro, share a kiss that will linger across continents and time. Forced by circumstances to leave their beloved mountains, both land in New York City, where they pass in and out of one another's lives. Gradually, the practical-minded Enza makes a name for herself as a seamstress, eventually sewing for the great Caruso at the Metropolitan Opera, while Ciro develops into a skilled shoemaker and the charming rake of Little Italy. Their paths remain star-crossed until Ciro realizes what Enza has known all along, that they are destined for each other. Drawing on her own family history, adored, best-selling Trigiani (Brava, Valentine, 2010) has crafted a gorgeous romantic saga that succeeds on the appealing chemistry of her well-matched lovers, whom readers will take to heart as dear friends. Though set a century ago, this expansive epic, which seems tailor-made for a miniseries, manages to feel both old-fashioned and thoroughly contemporary as Enza and Ciro come to exemplify the immigrant experience in America as strangers in a strange land who ultimately find themselves at home in a new world. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: A major publicity campaign, including a national tour and strong social media presence, will launch passionately popular Trigiani's new, irresistible love story. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

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Kirkus Reviews 2012 May #2
Despite its girth, Trigiani's latest saga of Italian life lies flat on the page. A portrait of early 20th-century Italian immigration, the story starts with two children in the Italian Alps. In one mountain village, serious, hardworking Enza lives with her large family; in another, rascal Ciro and his brother Eduardo are orphans at the convent. When 16-year-old Ciro travels to Enza's village to dig the grave of her little sister, the two meet for the first time, and Enza falls in love. But soon after, Ciro is sent to America (he caught the priest kissing a girl) to apprentice as a shoemaker. Trigiani's novels often bask in Italian culture, and this latest is no exception, taking place during the great wave of Italian immigration. New York's Little Italy is a joyous place, and handsome, outgoing Ciro fits right in. A few years later, Enza and her father go to America (just to make enough money to dig their family out of poverty), and Ciro and Enza briefly meet again. Enza, a talented seamstress, first works in a factory, and then finds her way to becoming a costumer at the Metropolitan Opera House. Life at the Met is a dream for Enza as she works for the great Caruso. Meanwhile, World War I has begun and Ciro leaves behind his comfortable life at the shop (and all the beauties) on Mulberry Street to enlist. In the trenches, he dreams about Enza (though why he never bothered with her before is unclear) while she is getting ready to marry another. Love wins out as Ciro and Enza marry then move to Minnesota to start a business and a family. Much more happens, but Trigiani's wide rush of plot hardly makes up for a dull heroine and a novel filled with workaday prose. A long list of life events, without the emotional depth to draw readers in. Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 2012 May #2

Trigiani's page-turning newest (after Viola in the Spotlight) is a sweeping saga that stretches across the World Wars, from Italy to America and back again. Ciro Lazzari and Enza Ravenelli grew up in nearby villages in Italy, but only meet when Ciro is hired to dig the grave for Enza's baby sister. Though they come from different backgrounds--Enza is the eldest daughter in a family of eight, while Ciro and his brother are raised by nuns after their father's death and mother's mental breakdown--the two nevertheless bond. But when Ciro catches a priest embracing a young girl, he is banished from the convent and must depart for New York City, where he apprentices as a shoemaker. Soon thereafter, Enza and her father journey to the U.S. to send money home to their struggling family. There, Enza becomes a talented seamstress and gets involved in the lushly detailed New York opera scene by making costumes for the Met. While in New York, Enza and Ciro reconnect, but Ciro is soon swept away to fight in WWI. When he returns and seeks Enza's hand in marriage, Enza, who is set to be betrothed to another man, must now weigh her possible futures: "A life with Ciro would be about family, a life with Vito would be about her." More than an epic romance, Trigiani's work pays homage to the tribulations of the immigrant experience, and the love that makes the journey and hardships worthwhile. (May)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC

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Publishers Weekly Annex Reviews

Trigiani's page-turning newest (after Viola in the Spotlight) is a sweeping saga that stretches across the World Wars, from Italy to America and back again. Ciro Lazzari and Enza Ravenelli grew up in nearby villages in Italy, but only meet when Ciro is hired to dig the grave for Enza's baby sister. Though they come from different backgrounds--Enza is the eldest daughter in a family of eight, while Ciro and his brother are raised by nuns after their father's death and mother's mental breakdown--the two nevertheless bond. But when Ciro catches a priest embracing a young girl, he is banished from the convent and must depart for New York City, where he apprentices as a shoemaker. Soon thereafter, Enza and her father journey to the U.S. to send money home to their struggling family. There, Enza becomes a talented seamstress and gets involved in the lushly detailed New York opera scene by making costumes for the Met. While in New York, Enza and Ciro reconnect, but Ciro is soon swept away to fight in WWI. When he returns and seeks Enza's hand in marriage, Enza, who is set to be betrothed to another man, must now weigh her possible futures: "A life with Ciro would be about family, a life with Vito would be about her." More than an epic romance, Trigiani's work pays homage to the tribulations of the immigrant experience, and the love that makes the journey and hardships worthwhile. (May)

[Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC

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