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The House of Serenades Paperback – June 4, 2012
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Four girls on a trip to Paris suddenly find themselves in a high-stakes game of Truth or Dare that spirals out of control. Learn More
Wealthy Italian families, lost love, definite class separation, and family secrets is what you will find in the THE HOUSE OF SERENADES. Many of the characters had secrets, but Giuseppe Berelli had the biggest secret of them all. Giuseppe kept a secret his entire life, and he was now becoming afraid the truth would come out and ruin his life. Giuseppe told stories to cover up his secret and to try to keep his family from losing their class distinction and power.
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Top Customer Reviews
At the heart of the story is the patriarch of the Berelli family, Giuseppe Berelli, a man who has hidden a deep, dark secret for most of his life. Now in the twilight of his years, the secret that he has so faithfully kept, is about to be revealed. He struggles to keep it secret because it can ruin not only his social status, but his entire life and all that he has worked for. It is shocking how far this man went to protect his name and status. A wonderful, dark antagonist!
The love story is about a young woman from the highest classes of society who falls in love with a baker's son and their two families who try to keep them apart. After learning that his daughter has lost her virginity to her lover, her father banishes her to a strict convent. At the same time, his two sons bring more troubles to the family, one through unruly drunkenness, and the other highly aggressive. And to stir the tension further, there is a corrupt doctor desperate to keep his own secrets and a nosy police chief who is anxious to uncover the secrets of a crime.
With plenty of subplots to keep readers interested and hooked, there is plenty to like. Larger than life, highly believable characters pepper this book's pages.Read more ›
The storyline focuses on class distinction and prestige and the worry about losing it all by going to any length no matter what the cost. The eloquent, descriptive writing style and the saga of the Berelli family of Genoa, Italy, will keep your curiosity peaked. And what a saga it was. There was hatred within families, jealousy among neighbors, shady dealings, corrupt doctors, nosy house help, pompous families, death threats to the Berilli family, and things that must be kept secret not only by Giuseppe but others in the town. These were secrets that ate at the characters every day of their lives. Secrets that they never should have told anyone because you never know how things will work out.
The book has different underlying themes, outstanding characters beautifully developed by the author, well-kept secrets, and explanations of the customs and mindset of this era in history. The mindset of different classes not mingling and the sneering of the upper class toward the lower class seemed to cause more trouble and pain than was necessary. This era also made evident how women were treated so poorly. Caterina and Matilda's heartbreaking stories describe very vividly the treatment of women and how they had no rights.Read more ›
This three hundred and fourteen page soft cover book has an old mandolin against a dark blue background on the front jacket and the author's photograph with her two dogs along with a short biography, a paragraph about the book and one review on the back. There were no noticeable grammatical or typographical errors in the casual style writing. No profanity was included but there is incest, infidelity and male/female anatomy discussed that may be unsuitable for a young adult.
The book is a simple love story: can two people from opposite monetary-society class fall and stay in love, even when family members try to tear them apart? Even when that same love can destroy each other?
Based in the early 1900s in Genoa, Italy, the daughter of a rich, high-society lawyer falls in love with a common baker's son. Her rigid and supposed letter-to-the-law father believes in the hierarchal ranking of the rich verses the lowly poor and demeans women, servants and pheasants. He absolutely refuses his daughter have any contact with the baker's son by sending her away to a convent after learning of her lost virginity (untrue or not). In addition to his own issues with his wife's past, his two sons including one with aggressiveness and drunkenness, his confidential doctor that has many secrets of his own, and the Chief of Police trying to figure out who is harassing him, the father makes choices that deem him both questionable and unrespectable in the community. The daughter has to make the hard decision between family and love.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was my book club read. I thought it badly written, badly edited and such a soap opera I only read one third of the book.Published on February 16, 2013 by Naomi A. Brownell
Eugenia Berilli reminisces. Her life had been idyllic before her brother Giuseppe's surprise marriage to Matilda. Read morePublished on August 29, 2012 by SusieH
The beautiful city of Genoa holds many secrets in 1910; the most alarming belong to the upper class. Read morePublished on August 16, 2012 by dotti reiss
4 and 1/2 stars
The House of Serenades by Lina Simoni is like a finely woven Italian tapestry. Read more