Queue My Review

April 17, 2008

Review: That’s Amore by Wendy Markham

Filed under: Review — Tags: , , , — jjmachshev @ 11:31 pm
That's Amore by Wendy Markham

When I asked to review this book, I was looking for a lighthearted, amusing story. While this book does have lighthearted, amusing moments, it’s so much more than that. I think we all forget sometimes that love isn’t always hearts and flowers…sometimes it’s tears and growing…and that’s what this book is really about. You can meet the perfect person—but if you’re not at that right point in your life (or the other person isn’t), it’s just not gonna work. That’s real life folks, and sometimes those of us that love romance tend to forget that. I don’t mean to say that this is a heavy book. It’s not. But it’s also not all hearts and flowers. And I’m glad that Ms. Markham took the time to remind us!! I also need to warn readers that this book is written in the first person. If that bothers you, then you’ve been warned!

Poor Ralphie Chickalini. He never knew his Mom since she died when he was born, so he was the last Chickalini child. Now he’s the last Chickalini left single…and since Pops died recently, he’s the last Chickalini left at Pops house. So he’s feeling a little down…and then his fiancé dumps him on New Year’s Eve. For the first time ever, he’s truly alone. Now being dumped is never fun, but he’s known for a while now that his ex wasn’t the one for him. She was the one his interfering family seemed to pick for him, and he just kinda went along with it. He wouldn’t have been the one to sever their relationship…’cause Ralphie just HATES change…and it seems that right now EVERYTHING in his life is changing. Into this mess steps Daria Marshall.

Daria is a gypsy. She doesn’t believe in staying in one place and she definitely doesn’t believe in forever. As Daria says, “In my family, men leave, women leave…everybody leaves. Myself included. And you can blame it on culture, heritage, gypsy blood all you want, but the truth is, it’s just easier.” Perhaps she should have added…and emotionally safer. The truth is, Daria is as much afraid of change as Ralph is, although she’s not willing to admit that. She WANTS to stay, build a home, have a family. But she tried that once and it didn’t work; so now she runs to keep her heart safe.

So how do these two meet? By coincidence of course. Or is it? You see, Daria can see dead people…and since she came to visit her sister, psychic Madame Tamar, in New York, she’s been seeing Pop Chickalini. However the one time Daria tried to help a spirit, it didn’t turn out so well…so now she runs from that too. It appears that Pops is trying to throw her together with Ralph, but Daria isn’t going to accept dating help from her sister the psychic or the ‘Other Side’. And Ralph? Well, let’s just say that he has quite a bit of growing to do. He needs to learn to let go and accept change…take care of himself…grieve for his losses.

I won’t say what happens with these two. I will say that I cried a couple of times while reading this book. Yet I still had a smile on my face when it ended. So if you’re looking for a frothy, lighthearted story…you may want to pass on this one. But if you’re looking for a story that will tug on your heartstrings, make you think and appreciate what you have, and rejoice with our characters when they get it right…then “That’s Amore” by Wendy Markham is a book you don’t want to miss.


Reviewed by Julie


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