Thursday, May 1, 2014

[Review: Wish You Were Italian by Kristin Rae]

"Wish You Were Italian"
Author: Kristin Rae
Series: If Only... #2
Pages: 323
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Date Published: May 6th, 2014
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Format Read: eARC provided by publisher (via NetGalley) for honest review


Pippa has always wanted to go to Italy … but not by herself. And certainly not to sit in art school the entire summer learning about dead guys’ paintings. When she steps off the plane in Rome, she realizes that traveling solo gives her the freedom to do whatever she wants. So it’s arrivederci, boring art program and ciao, hot Italian guys!

Charming, daring, and romantic, Bruno is just the Italian Pippa’s looking for—except she keeps running into cute American archeology student Darren everywhere she goes. Pippa may be determined to fall in love with an Italian guy … but the electricity she feels with Darren says her heart might have other plans. Can Pippa figure out her feelings before her parents discover she left the program and—even worse—she loses her chance at love?

My Thoughts:

An Open Letter To Wish You Were Italian, 

Holy crudmuffens (I'm not sure if that's a real word, but who cares?) you were just about one of the cutest fluff balls of a book that I've ever read!  When I started you I had no clue that most of your pages would take place in Cinque Terre.  Oddly that's the one place that I've been to in Italy.  So I'd like to personally thank you for all the awesome flash backs and the honest distributions of what happens there and how things look!  Of course that wasn't the only awesome thing about you, you also had a delightful love story.  So thanks for all the fun.  You've done good book! 

-The White Unicorn

Wish You Were Italian was a breath of fresh, spunky, fluffy air to me.  It has all the goods for the perfect summer book.  Rebellious teens, wild adventures, moments with random strangers that you'll never forget, exotic locals and swoony kisses.  What more could you want from a summer romance?  Nothing, I'm telling you that the answer is nothing.  

I love that Rae decides to make her protagonist go off course in a foreign country.  Pippa made a crazy discussion to ditch art school in Florence and travel around Italy by herself.  Of course this causes lots of truth withholding and shenanigans, but I appreciate Rae's clear view of what it's really like to travel.  As an avid traveler myself, I loved how detailed those parts of the book were.  Plus, it made me want to go back to Cinque Terre in a hurry.

The choice to use Pippa's best friend Morgan from home was spot on.  She writes dares in a journal that she sends Pippa off with.  It adds another character into the mix and it forces Pippa to jump out of her comfort zone.  It's fun to keep up with the lists that Pippa makes along the way as well.  

Pippa was really likeable.  She's spunky and fearless (okay, maybe she's not always fearless) and she's funny.  Her willingness to jump on board with whatever happens on her journey is great.  She meets people and ends up sleeping in their house.  She's a cool kid.

Even though this is a romance.  The book manages to deal with some family dynamic issues as well as strong female friendships.  I thought that these bits added a lot of extra layers and I enjoyed them a lot.

The romance is fun even if it is pretty darn far fetched.  It starts off looking like it's going to be a love-triangle, but it's not.  Mr. Extra Italian man actually has a large role to play in how Pippa's life turns out.  Darren on the other hand is pretty darn perfect!  He's awesome and likes Pippa so much.  It's fun to watch all three of these characters find themselves in the mayhem of an Italian summer.

Over all this one is just a ton of good, clean fun!  I know I can't really complain about anything.  Plus, can you say wanderlust?!

   4 Unicorns = Close to perfect!


Natalie Natflixandbooks said...

Aw, this sounds really cute. I have to admit that this cover looked a little TOO cutesy for me, but I'll have to give it a shot. I love that the book showcases strong friendships even though it's a romance. Great review!

Nicole said...

I'm so excited to read this now! I haven't been to Cinque Terre but I've been to other parts of Italy and it's one of my favorite places so I bet I will just adore the setting! And as an avid traveler myself, the premise just sounds like so much fun! I will definitely be reading this one by the pool this summer :)