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Review: Brava, Valentine

March 16, 2010

When Valentine Roncalli’s beloved grandmother moves to Italy and gets re-married she leaves her custom shoe business to Valentine and Valentine’s brother, Alfred.  Valentine and Alfred haven’t always gotten along, so Valentine’s concerned for the business that she’s grown to love.

While Valentine is tying to take the business in a new direction, she’s also balancing a budding romance and drama from her large, Italian-American family.  Needless to say, some things work out better than others.

I read Very Valentine by Adriana Trigiani last year and have to admit that I was a little disappointed.  It’s not that it’s not a good book, it just didn’t meet the high standards that I’ve set for Trigiani’s work.  Well, let me tell you, she is back on her game with Brava, Valentine.  I thought this book was great!  For me, it delivered everything I expected of it.  Great relationships, family dynamics, a little romance and a little controversy.  I laughed and I cried while I read it and any book that makes me feel emotions like that is a good one to me.

I think the fantastic characters are what make this book so special to me.  I love Valentine and think she is a wonderful character that many women can relate to.  She is strong, smart and independent, yet she is full of self-doubt and finds herself trying to please others.  I can’t wait to see what happens to Valentine in the next book.

Brava, Valentine is the second book in the Valentine Roncalli series.  It does stand alone, but I really think it’s better if you’ve read Very Valentine.  If you haven’t read it yet, you can enter my giveaway for it here.

Review copy provided by Harper Collins via TLC Book Tours.   I am an Amazon Associate.
38 Comments leave one →
  1. March 16, 2010 5:17 am

    I’m not really sure how long I will continue to sit and read all of the wonderful reviews for this book series and not pick it up. I know that it is going to be what the doctor ordered at some point, when I’ve had enough of the death, scandal, stealing and all that other stuff!

  2. Kaye permalink
    March 16, 2010 5:47 am

    I’m a little surprised you were disappointed in Very Valentine. I think this is a great series and can’t wait to read the third one also. Lucia, Lucia is still one of my faves.

  3. March 16, 2010 5:54 am

    I really, really liked Very Valentine and LOVED Brava, Valentine : ) so I get that there was a difference for you. Can’t wait to see where she takes Valentine in the third book.

  4. March 16, 2010 6:54 am

    This summer—this summer when the work finally fades (it will, won’t it?) I’m going to finally read my first Trigiani!

  5. March 16, 2010 8:04 am

    I haven’t read the first one, but I’ve heard good reviews of this series! Gotto check it out!

  6. March 16, 2010 8:35 am

    I agree that this one was better! Great review.

  7. March 16, 2010 8:46 am

    This sounds like a lovely series of books…thanks for the great review!

  8. March 16, 2010 9:09 am

    I haven’t read anything by Trigiani yet, but I keep hearing good things about her books. I’ll keep this one in mind.

    –Anna

  9. stacybuckeye permalink
    March 16, 2010 9:36 am

    Thanks for giving away the first one!

  10. March 16, 2010 10:11 am

    I have the two books in the Valentine series next in my pile. I’m glad to hear you loved this one. I’ve only read one Trigiani book, but I thoroughly enjoyed it, so I’m looking forward to starting this new series!

  11. March 16, 2010 11:34 am

    This sounds like a great book, Kathy! I will enter the Valentine giveaway. 🙂

  12. March 16, 2010 11:51 am

    This one with the fantastic characters is up my alley.

  13. March 16, 2010 12:01 pm

    Oooh, I have to get busy with Very Valentine…must work them both in before the end of April! So glad to see that they are so good…if Brava is better that just gives me something to look forward to!!!

  14. March 16, 2010 12:06 pm

    Sounds like a great series to pick up this summer–perfect for the patio and a warm evening.

  15. March 16, 2010 1:13 pm

    I absolutely loved Very Valentine and can’t wait to get my hands on this one! You’re right: Valentine is a woman many of us can relate to. She seems very human!

  16. March 16, 2010 2:33 pm

    I’m going to be reading both these books come May and I can’t wait.

  17. March 16, 2010 3:30 pm

    I enjoyed the first book. I loved the setting, the characters and the story was a bit different. I haven’t gotten the urge to read book 2 yet. Not sure why.

  18. March 16, 2010 4:04 pm

    I love it when a sequel is even better than the first book. Somehow it doesn’t seem to happen often!

  19. karenk permalink
    March 16, 2010 4:20 pm

    i would enjoy reading Valentine’s story…thanks for the chance 🙂

  20. March 16, 2010 5:42 pm

    Thanks for this review. Now I really want to read this series. Loud, funny Italian family? I can relate…

  21. March 16, 2010 6:52 pm

    I haven’t read any of these books. I’ve been reading a lot of positive reviews on them lately. I think i’ll have to read them for myself soon. They sound great.

  22. March 16, 2010 8:08 pm

    Italy? Great characters? You loved it? Sounds like I will, too.

  23. March 16, 2010 8:11 pm

    I’m looking forward to this one. Of course, I have to read Very Valentine first. I appreciate your thoughts on this book, Kathy. And isn’t the cover lovely?

  24. March 16, 2010 9:17 pm

    I’ve read several good reviews on this so it definitely piqued my interest!

  25. March 16, 2010 9:45 pm

    Good to hear she bounced back with this book.

  26. March 16, 2010 10:54 pm

    I’ve never heard of this author, but it sounds like an interesting series (no giveaway please; I’m too far behind as it is)–maybe in the summer.

  27. March 16, 2010 11:29 pm

    I’m looking forward to reading this series at some point and it’s good to know that it’s worth it to stick with it to the second book!

  28. March 17, 2010 1:07 am

    why have i never heard of this series? sounds great–i come from a large italian family myself. 🙂

    i can always count on you to point me in the direction of some great new-to-me reads. thanks, kathy!

  29. March 17, 2010 8:41 am

    I have both of these and am looking forward to reading them. I haven’t read very far in Very Valentine but the writing and the story seem great. It’s an introduction to Trigiani’s work so I hope that it well help me that I have no expectations.

  30. March 17, 2010 10:13 am

    I totally agree – I thought Brava Valentine was better than Very Valentine! I think it’s because Trigiani introduced so many wonderful characters in Very Valentine, but didn’t really develop that. But she did in Brava, which is why I liked it better!

  31. justbookreading permalink
    March 17, 2010 12:45 pm

    I just got this in the mail and I’m looking forward to it. Glad to hear you liked it.

  32. March 17, 2010 3:40 pm

    Good review! I need to get on these books!

  33. March 17, 2010 3:56 pm

    Great review! I always love it when a book makes me feel strong emotions, so I can understand why this book merited such deep regard for you. Glad you loved it!

  34. March 17, 2010 6:24 pm

    I agree, I liked Very Valentine and loved Brava Valentine. I felt like it was a stronger story and the characters were well developed. I can’t wait for the third book!

  35. March 17, 2010 10:11 pm

    I can’t believe that I have not read about this book at all. Sounds like a great series. I will definitely want to read this author now.

    Thank you for the great review!

  36. March 18, 2010 10:31 pm

    I loved the Big Stone Gap series and am looking forward to starting on this one! Both books just arrived in the mail this week – yay!

  37. March 20, 2010 12:10 pm

    The Valentine books are the only Trigiani I’ve read, so I don’t yet have your benchmark of LUCIA, LUCIA against which to judge.

    I really liked both VERY and BRAVA, and, interestingly, I liked VERY VALENTINE more! Valentine herself felt more independent to me, and I saw more changes in the character in that volume.

    Having said that, I can’t wait to see how it all comes together in the last volume … write faster, Adriana! 🙂

  38. March 22, 2010 2:11 pm

    sounds like it will be interesting.

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