I could go on and on and on about The Shoemaker’s Wife by Adriana Trigiani. It is such a beautiful story.
The Shoemaker’s Wife is the tale of a young girl named Enza and a young boy named Ciro who grow up in the Italian Alps and, as teenagers, are both forced to immigrate to America to find jobs. Here, Trigiani follows their separate journeys, how they find their way in a new country, and the forces that bring them together. It’s a story of finding yourself, of figuring out how to make a home when you’re so far from everything you know, and it’s a story about finding the person you are meant to be with.
Trigiani does a beautiful job of describing setting. The Italian Alps come alive in all their majestic beauty, and the streets of America and busy, bustling, and bewildering when shown through the eyes of a newcomer. I’m going to get a bit girly here, but she also does an amazing job at describing the clothes the characters wear. Enza is a seamstress and designs the most beautiful dresses, which Trigiani describes in exquisite detail. I loved it! I loved being able to picture Enza in her fancy hats strolling the streets of New York. (And just check out that pretty, pretty cover!) It’s the little details and fine touches that really made this book feel special.
I also love a novel that spans the entire life of its’ characters. You get to see how they grow, what they become, and what makes them who they are. The Shoemaker’s Wife shows the full journey of two immigrants coming to North America, and their successes and struggles throughout their lives. It made me want to talk to my own grandparents about what life was like here, when they first came from Europe. (I even gave a copy of this book to my grandmother for Mother’s Day!)
Overall, I love this book. It’s a beautiful book. The settings are beautiful, the details are beautiful, the relationships are beautiful. Seriously, I could gush on a lot longer, but I’m already way over 100 words!
I recommend this book for anyone looking for a book they can truly escape in this summer. It’s lush, it’s emotional, but it’s not dark. Just don’t be scared away by the 450+ page count!
(This was Book #19 of my #50BookPledge.)
And, I have to include this paragraph from the description:
“This riveting historical epic of love and family, war and loss, risk and destiny is the novel Adriana Trigiani was born to write, one inspired by her own family history and the love of tradition that has propelled her body of bestselling novels to international acclaim. Like Lucia, Lucia, The Shoemaker’s Wife defines an era with clarity and splendor, with operatic scope and a vivid cast of characters who will live on in the imaginations of readers for years to come.” — Read more.
Sounds so good, right?!