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Italian for Beginners Paperback – August 13, 2009
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The Amazon Book Review
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Frequently Bought Together
"A fun, high-spirited [novel]."―Romantic Times
"Overflowing with bubbly fun...intoxicating with the magic of Paris...Like a bottle of champagne...You'll drink it down in one glamorous gulp."―Julia Holden, author of ONE DANCE IN PARIS
"With her characteristic wit and warmth, Harmel tells a very entertaining story of a woman who reinvents herself almost without realizing it."―Melissa Senate, author of SEE JANE DATE and LOVE YOU TO DEATH
About the Author
Kristin Harmel is the author of four women's fiction novels. She also reports for People magazine, and her work has appeared in magazines including Glamour, Runner's World, Woman's Day, American Baby, and Men's Health. She's also the author of two novels for teens. Kristin Harmel lives in Orlando, Florida.
Top Customer Reviews
The one time Cat remembers being truly happy was when she was in Rome for a summer during college. She had a foreign lover named Francesco and a life of her own. She truly smiled without worrying about everyone else. And so, with some pursuasion from her persistent co-worker, Cat takes her first vacation - 4 weeks in Rome. Away from everything. She plans to return to her former fling and fall in love with him and the city once again. Of course, nothing goes as planned. Francesco turns out to be horrid and the city wasn't entirely welcoming at first. But with the help of a crazy waitress, Karina, and a restauranteur who calls her Princess Ann (a reference I later understood), Cat learns how to take some risks and let go.
Italian for Beginners is a lovely little book that takes you from the crowded streets of New York to the small alleys of Rome. Harmel does a fantastic job at describing both locations beautifully. She captures the liveliness of New York and the essence of Rome. From going to Rome I, personally, learned that it's not all about the main attractions - it's about the moments. And this book has plenty of memorable moments.Read more ›
Cat is such a timid, predictable, wimpy character that I had a hard time relating to her life. It was so redundant that I started to roll my eyes when the author would describe how Cat was so afraid of taking chances!
Francesco was a predictable character, and it was obvious that his motives were not pure when he never emailed Cat again.
Marco was interesting. But there is no way that Cat would not have even listened to him about his "misunderstanding." If she liked him as much as she claimed she did, they she would have at least checked her email...
Karina was funny and interesting, but why is she so, um, hot and cold? Even a stranger would never get so mad over a simple statement as to leave a roommate alone in the middle of the night in a foreign country. Really?
Overall, an entertaining read, but frustrating characters!
Once in Rome, Cat struggles to understand what's keeping her in the Eternal City after a series of unplanned disasters derail her plans. It's certainly not Francesco, her former flame. The handsome Marco has the annoying habit of calling Cat "Princess Ann" and making constant references to Roman Holiday even though she's never seen the movie (Cat's grandparents were extras, and even named her mother Audrey Hepburn Verdicchio), but there's little action on the romantic front. And Cat's afraid to contact her Roman family, whom she hasn't heard from since her mother's death nearly two decades ago.
Over the course of four weeks, Cat makes peace with the ghosts that haunt her. At the same time, she rediscovers the timeless charms of everyday life in Rome, dodging Italian stallions and eating like a princess, capturing slices of everyday life through the lens of her ...Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I liked the story very much. But, the star was a little slow to catch on to anything!Published 1 month ago by Jeanie
Engaging story line and a main character that grows and comes to understand herself, even at the ripe age of 35. Just goes to show it's not too late to discover yourself. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Barb
Loved this book! The main character takes you on an adventure involving travel, romance, risks, change, self discovery, stepping out of her box, making peace with the past and... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Amazon Customer
Very enlightening as to what life was for immagrants and how it effected their lives, also
The lives of their children. Shows how different we are yet very much the same. Read more
I ended up DNF'ing this novel. I got bored and tired reading about the trials and tribulations of Cat - especially since she was such a doormat when it comes to her family (esp. Read morePublished 14 months ago by norcalgal
I love Italy, but I haven't been back in over 26 years, but I did with this glorious read, with the best elements of finding oneself, who you were meant to be, lifetime friendships... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Marcie
Nice light reading, enjoyed the descriptions of Italy. Not her best work. Enjoyed the Sweetness of Forgetting much more.Published 23 months ago by Book Snob
Spoke to me even though I am at a different stage of life
She's a terrific writer, deserving of notice