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Review: Roman Crazy by Alice Clayton & Nina Bocci

by Alice Clayton & Nina Bocci
Series: The Broads Abroad #1
Genres: Contemporary
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication Date: September 13th 2016
Source: ARC received for review
Rating: ★★★1/2
Amazon - Barnes & Noble
Avery Bardot steps off the plane in Rome, looking for a fresh start. She’s left behind a soon-to-be ex-husband in Boston and plans to spend the summer with her best friend Daisy, licking her wounds—and perhaps a gelato or two. But when her American-expat friend throws her a welcome party on her first night, Avery’s thrown for a loop when she sees a man she never thought she’d see again: Italian architect Marcello Bianchi.

Marcello was the man—the one who got away. And now her past is colliding with her present, a present where she should be mourning the loss of her marriage and—hey, that fettuccine is delicious! And so is Marcello…

Slipping easily into the good life of summertime in Rome, Avery spends her days exploring a city that makes art historians swoon, and her nights swooning over her unexpected what was old is new again romance. It’s heady, it’s fevered, it’s wanton, and it’s crazy. But could this really be her new life? Or is it just a temporary reprieve before returning to the land of twin-set cardigans and crustless sandwiches?

A celebration of great friendship, passionate romance, and wonderful food, Roman Crazy is a lighthearted story of second chances and living life to the fullest.

I'm not much of a traveler, mostly because with schools I don't have a lot of time to travel, and also because I'm not fond of planes. However, I'm always eager to learn more about foreign cultures through books. I love books like Roman Crazy because they not only entertain me, but they also feed my wanderlust. With the book set in Italy, I knew I was in for a ride and the book certainly delivered.

Roman Crazy is at its heart a story of a woman who learns to chase after her dreams and live the life that she has always wanted for herself. When Avery finds her husband cheating on her with his secretary, she hops on a plane to Italy to be with her best friend, Daisy. I liked Avery a lot. She was in a tough place at the start of the book, but I loved watching her blossom into this strong, confident and determined woman throughout Roman Crazy. She was very much of a multi-dimensional character. Her passion for art restoration, culture and food was contagious. I loved how she viewed her new life in Italy with so much of awe. On her visit to Rome, she reunites with Marcello, an Italian man she had a hot fling with during her senior year in Barcelona. Marcello was a pretty great guy himself. He was very much of a family guy and as driven and passionate as Avery. Plus, he could be super swoony with his dialogues. Despite that though, I felt like there was something missing that was preventing me from loving him wholeheartedly. I think he needed just a bit more character development for his character to pop out of the pages.

The romance in Roman Crazy was a second chance romance. Avery and Marcello had left things with loose ends when Avery returned back to the US from Barcelona. I was a little nervous that there would be lots of miscommunication drama because of it, but I was pleasantly surprised that there wasn't any. They talked it out, apologized and moved on with their new found relationship. They were super adorable together and had some seriously great chemistry as a couple. I especially loved all the little dates they went on around Rome. Since I loved them so much together, I was a little disappointed at the lack of sexy times scenes. There are there, but with the exception of one, they were all fade to black and I would have liked more. I needed more steamy scenes because these two had the potential to be HOT.

Now, what I did really love was the Italian setting. These two authors did a fabulous job at capturing the essence of Rome. I felt like I was there walking the streets of Rome, eating Italian pastries and pasta with Avery. All the descriptions of the locales, the Italian people and the culture and lifestyle were breath-taking. I loved how much focus there was on the setting as that was one major reason I picked this book up. Another aspect of Roman Crazy I liked was the friendship between Daisy and Avery. These two girls cracked me up whenever they were in a scene together. I loved how loyal and supportive they were, but most of all, I just loved how much these two talked. I'm guessing Daisy's book is next and I cannot wait to find out who the man is who will sweep her off her feet.

Roman Crazy is a book I recommend for those who have been bitten by the travel bug. The relationships are written beautifully here, but this is a book you should read to explore Rome through Avery's eyes. I'm excited to see what else this writing duo has in store for readers.

What are some of your favorite books with foreign settings?
Let me know in the comments below!