Rating: 3.25 stars out of 5
Tom has always been steady and predictable—a formula he’s sure will lead him to success in his career. When his method fails him and he loses his job, he throws caution to the wind for the first time in his life and books a European holiday.
Maybe Tom shouldn’t be surprised that Cupid’s arrow finds him in one of the most romantic cities in the world: Venice, Italy. When he encounters Giovanni working in the family pizzeria, it’s lust at first sight. Their time together touring the city is so magical it feels like a dream. But Tom is shy while Giovanni is charming and flirtatious. Tom has a newfound freedom with his unemployment, while family burdens weigh heavily on Giovanni. Add culture differences and miscommunication into the mix, and their brief romance might fade as quickly as the beautiful dream it resembles.
As a travelogue, I can’t recommend An American in Venice (World of Love) by Luca Domani highly enough. The descriptions of Venice, the alleys, the markets are visually enticing and intimate in a way only someone greatly familiar with the city and totally in love with her would write it. You flow through Venice, night or day, places well known or not, and it makes you want to be there in Tom’s shoes..wet, wet shoes..because the it’s flooding fall season…falling in love, feeling the magic of Venice everywhere. For me it’s the best element of the story and it never let me down.
But there is a romance to talk about and two main characters. Tom is a predictable puss who’s lost his job and decided to take that trip he’s put off for far too long. Off to Italy and his first stop Venice, a place he traveled with his parents and has always wanted to return as an adult. I liked Tom, he has depth to him and a certain “everyman essence” that feels real enough. I certainly felt for him slogging through the flooded hallway of his hotel during the latest bout of rising water in Venice something he wasn’t prepared for. Great start to the novel and his visit.
It’s his introduction to Giovanni who’s my issue here. I liked what I saw of his character but there’s just not enough of him here or something feels missing in Tom and Giovanni’s interactions to let me connect with their burgeoning relationship. Giovanni’s background was supplied and interesting enough, he has history but it never felt substantial for some reason. And neither did he. Not like Tom did. Don’t know. But I never felt it or them.
Others may feel differently.
Anyhow it ended as a HFN, which was realistic enough but still far too much instalove for me. Sweet romance, outstanding travelogue. Just for Venice alone I would read this story.
Cover art by Bree Archer. She has Tom down pat and love the background. Just perfect.
Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 61 pages
Published July 19th 2017 by Dreamspinner Press
SeriesWorld of Love settingVenice (Italy)