Tuesday, May 12, 2009

CFBA Tour - Taking Tuscany

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Taking Tuscany

David C. Cook (May 2009)


Renee Riva


Renee Riva writes humorous stories with a message, for both children and adults. Having been raised in a large Italian family with a great sense of humor, she has much to draw from for developing quirky characters.

She loves sharing her secrets for story starters at Young Author events, helping to spark the imagination of young minds. Renee and her husband live in Richland, Washington, with their three daughters, a dog, a cat, and until recently, her beloved hamster—may she rest in peace.


A. J. Degulio loved the idea of a visit to the Old Country... until her family decided to stay. It's 1972 and she's turning fourteen in a crumbling castle on a hill in Tuscany, wishing she were back in Idaho with her beloved dog, Sailor. In Italy, her blonde hair makes her stick out like a vanilla wafer in a box of chocolate biscotti, and she's so lonely her best friend is a nun from the local convent.

The challenges of roots and relatives are nothing new to A. J., but she's going to need more than the famous Degulio sense of humor to survive. Can't anyone see that Italy isn't really home? It will take a catastrophe - and a few wise words from a friend - for A. J. to understand that sometimes the only thing you can change is your perspective.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Taking Tuscany, go HERE

This one grew on me. (Kinda like life in Tuscany grew on A.J.!) I don't much care for books written in a narrative style that simply describe day-to-day life without a specific plot. So I had a difficult time getting into this tale of A.J.'s life in Tuscany. But the writing and A.J.'s angst drew me in, and I enjoyed the unfolding relationships and the lessons A.J. learned about family, friends, mean girls, and what really matters. By the time I finished the last page, I found myself wanting to read the next book, Heading Home! I'm glad I stuck with it, and recommmend it for you or your teenage daughter.

Happy Reading!


View blog reactions

1 comment:

A Stone Gatherer said...

I like your honesty in your review! They always help me in deciding what I will read next!