My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Summary (from Goodreads): Italy . . . Shakespeare . . . but no romance?
Kate Sanderson inherited her good sense from her mother, a disciplined law professor, and her admiration for the Bard from her father, a passionate Shakespeare scholar. When she gets dumped, out of the blue, for the Practically Perfect Ashley Lawson, she vows never to fall in love again. From now on she will control her own destiny, and every decision she makes will be highly reasoned and rational. She thinks Shakespeare would have approved.
So when she is accepted to a summer Shakespeare symposium in Verona, Italy, Kate sees it as the ideal way to get over her heartbreak once and for all. She'll lose herself in her studies, explore ancient architecture, and eat plenty of pasta and gelato. (Plus, she'll be getting college credit for it—another goal accomplished!) But can even completely logical Kate resist the romance of living in a beautiful villa in the city where those star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet met and died for each other? Especially when the other Shakespeare Scholars—in particular Giacomo, with his tousled brown hair, expressive dark eyes, and charming ways—try hard to break her protective shell?
My Summary: Kate's always had a type-A personality: she's neat, organised, and logical, pitying those who let trivial things like love get in the way of achieving their goals. As the daughter of a cold-as-ice lawyer and a Shakespeare historian, Kate can't help but know all there is to know about Shakespeare's most famous play - Romeo & Juliet.
But despite her vast Shakespearean knowledge, Kate still doesn't believe in love - especially now that Jerome's dumped her flat on her face. But the Fates have something in store for Kate: she wins an essay contest, the grand prize being a month-long trip to Verona, Italy - the setting of Romeo & Juliet. But Kate makes a promise to herself: no matter what happens, she won't let something as silly as love ruin her trip... but in the city where Shakespeare's most romantic play is supposed to have taken place, love is hard to avoid...
My Thoughts: I picked up this book almost a year ago, not knowing that it was the book that the movie Letters to Juliet was based on. But as I usually do, I placed it on top of my to-be-read pile and forgot all about it. Then, recently, I picked it up and decided I'd waited long enough.
This book surprised me. At 400 pages, it managed to keep me entertained and wanting to know what would happen (although I gotta admit, it was more than a tad bit predictable). It was a great light read, and the descriptions of the sights and sounds (and yummy smells!) of Italy added that extra layer that made it a great read. There were definitely parts were I found myself laughing out loud - the characters were awesome, each one's unique personality adding to the group dynamic. The writing was good as well, and the author's use of imagery made you feel like you'd followed Kate all the way to Verona.
Final Thoughts: I definitely recommend this book to anyone who's looking for a light, funny, romantic read, and especially for fans of Thirteen Little Blue Envelopes and Falling in Love with British Boys.