Review of Our Italian Summer by Jennifer Probst

And Release Blitz! courtesy of Valentine PR

Our Italian Summer

Jennifer Probst

January 12, 2021


Blurb: Workaholic, career-obsessed Francesca is fiercely independent and successful in all areas of her life except one: family. She struggles to make time for her relationship with her teenage daughter, Allegra, and the two have become practically strangers to each other. When Allegra hangs out with a new crowd and is arrested for drug possession, Francesca gives in to her mother’s wish that they take one epic summer vacation to trace their family roots in Italy. She just never expected to face a choice that might change the course of her life. . .
Allegra wants to make her grandmother happy, but she hates the idea of forced time with her mother and vows to fight every step of the ridiculous tour, until a young man on the verge of priesthood begins to show her the power of acceptance, healing, and the heartbreaking complications of love.
Sophia knows her girls are in trouble. A summer filled with the possibility for change is what they all desperately need. Among the ruins of ancient Rome, the small churches of Assisi, and the rolling hills of Tuscany, Sophia hopes to show her girls that the bonds of family are everything, and to remind them that they can always lean on one another, before it’s too late.

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I feel like Jennifer Probst is a completely underrated author. Her romances are always deliciously reliable with interesting storylines and characters. When I saw that her next book, Our Italian Summer, was women’s fiction, I knew I had to read it. Jennifer Probst did not let me down!

Our Italian Summer is about three generations of Ferrari women who travel to Italy and discover themselves and each other along the way.

Grandmother Sophia has always wanted to visit the land of her parents, walk in the places where they walked. She and her husband put off the trip, believing that there would always be more time–until there wasn’t. Now, seeing the chasm between her workaholic daughter, Frannie, and her beloved granddaughter, Allegra, Sophia realizes that the time to travel to Italy is now, especially since she knows she might not have another year.

Francesca (Frannie) is a control-freak, which, in turn has made her a workaholic. Her work obsession and micro-managing are taking their toll, however, not only in her relationship with Allegra but with her own health. Two incidents, Frannie suffering a panic attack and Allegra getting arrested, are the catalyst for Frannie deciding that a trip to Italy might just be what they all need. But can Frannie stop checking her phone and actually enjoy the trip and live?

Allegra feels like she’s being forced to give up the trip of a lifetime, touring around the country in a camper van with her new friends, to appease her mother. She knows that her mother will abandon her and her grandmother to work because that’s the way her life has been. Her mother has missed all of the recent important moments in her life. Why would she bother showing up now?

It is from these starting points that the characters evolve. Each changes along the way. Each has an epiphany. Each learns defining truths about each other.

Our Italian Summer made me laugh, cry, and want very much to go to Italy, which other books have not been able to do. Probst’s writing is beautiful. Her descriptions are alive and made me feel like I was right there with her characters. And I came to love these characters, even Frannie whom I initially did not like but whose change is the most astounding in the novel. Oh, wouldn’t I love to read a novel about Allegra in the future to see how her promising future turned out!

If you are a fan of women’s fiction, read this book! You won’t be disappointed.

I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.



5 out of 5 butterflies

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