Italian for Beginners by Kristin Harmel | NOOK Book (eBook) | Barnes & Noble
Italian for Beginners

Italian for Beginners

4.1 40
by Kristin Harmel
     
 

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Thirty-four-year-old Manhattan accountant Cat Connelly has always lived life on the safe side. But after her little sister gets married, Cat wonders if she has condemned herself to a life of boredom by playing by the rules. She decides to take a chance for once, accepting an invitation to spend a month with an old flame in Italy. But her reunion with the slick and

Overview

Thirty-four-year-old Manhattan accountant Cat Connelly has always lived life on the safe side. But after her little sister gets married, Cat wonders if she has condemned herself to a life of boredom by playing by the rules. She decides to take a chance for once, accepting an invitation to spend a month with an old flame in Italy. But her reunion with the slick and gorgeous Francesco is short-lived, and she finds herself suddenly alone in Rome. Now, she must see if she has the courage to live outside the lines for the first time - and to face a past she never understood. It will take an unexpected friendship with a fiery Italian waitress, a whirlwind Vespa tour of the Eternal City with a handsome stranger, and a surprise encounter with an old acquaintance to show Cat that life doesn't always work out the way you expect, but sometimes you have to have fall in order to fly.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"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

Romantic Times
"A fun, high-spirited [novel]."
Melissa Senate
"With her characteristic wit and warmth, Harmel tells a very entertaining story of a woman who reinvents herself almost without realizing it."
Julia Holden
"Overflowing with bubbly fun...intoxicating with the magic of Paris...Like a bottle of champagne...You'll drink it down in one glamorous gulp."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780446550666
Publisher:
Grand Central Publishing
Publication date:
08/13/2009
Sold by:
Hachette Digital, Inc.
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
384
Sales rank:
205,620
File size:
747 KB

Meet 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.

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Italian for Beginners 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 39 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The storyline started out promising... but quickly became very predictable. To be fair, Kristen Harmel did a good job in bringing Rome to her American readers. By her references in the text, she did her research of the ancient city well. But the biggest issue I had with the book was it's writting style. Harmel did not use an extensive vocabulary; it had the feel of a young adult novel. I become frusterated with the main character, Cat, from almost the very beginning. The good news is that there were redeeming supporting characters, like Cat's new Italian friend Karina. Overall, a good beach book if you're looking for an easy entertaining read. Not for you if you're looking for something more in depth.
kuhlcat More than 1 year ago
This book makes me want to go to Rome even more than I already do. Such beautiful images of the ancient city; I want to see them for myself! Maybe I should become an accountant and lead such a boring life that I don't use any of my vacation days and I have a big enough nest egg to take a whole month of to spend in Rome....It's probably too late for that. But Cat's life is very boring. And she messes up a perfectly good date by making an assumption about a perfectly decent man. Personally, I thought it was rather obvious that Michael wasn't really being a jerk, but it takes at least 200 pages until Cat finds out the truth. And in that 200 pages she ignores both phone calls and emails from him, in which he could have easily explained the situation. The other thing that bothered me about this book was that the author seemed to be stuck on "Roman Holiday". I do understand that there was a reason for it (Audrey Hepburn reminded Cat of the mother she thought betrayed her), but I still felt like it was dragged on a bit too long. Especially when Marco kept quoting the movie even after Cat told him that she hadn't seen it. But despite these things, I did enjoy the story. I loved the character of Karina, a feisty Italian woman. I loved Cat's journey of self-discovery; finding out who she was through her mother's city. And I liked how she didn't immediately turn to a man to define her. Once she started discovering who she was as a person without all of her boring trappings, she realized she needed to spend time with herself before she could think about having a relationship with a man. And I especially loved reading about Rome. Being the history buff that I am, I really need to get out there for myself soon! In the meantime, I'll live vicariously through characters in books...
Veggiechiliqueen More than 1 year ago
Cat Connelly lives a perfectly safe - if boring - existence. The daughter of an Irish father and an Italian mother, she's spent her life being who she thought others wanted her to be: organized, responsible, and always there to cook, clean, or dole out money in a bind. She works at a New York accounting firm for the money and health benefits, but her true love is digital photography. She has serious issues due to her mother's lengthy absence during her adolescence, and at thirty-five, she's still single and has serious commitment issues. She hasn't taken a vacation in years, but after a very public humiliation by her senile Irish grandmother, Cat ends up in Rome, a city she last visited as an exchange student thirteen years ago. 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 Panasonic DMC-FZ50. Harmel turns the narrative into a glowing travelogue, a sort of off-the-beaten-path Rome that's enchanting and refreshing. The descriptions of Karina's cooking are mouthwatering, and several recipes mentioned in the book are included: cheese fondue, rice-stuffed tomatoes, Margherita pizza, creamy risotto, and panzanella salad. Most are vegetarian (the risotto calls for chicken broth, but vegetable broth could easily be substituted), all are easy to prepare and perfect for a light summer meal on the patio (or piazza). Some of the plot twists were a bit too convenient for my tastes, but overall this is a light summer read that's a perfect escape from daily life full of the sights, sounds, and smells of Italy. Much of the story centers on Roman Holiday (Special Collector's Edition), right down to the cover photo of an attractive brunette with an Audreyesque bob on the back of a Vespa, so if you haven't seen the film, it's the perfect accompaniment, along with a glass of Prosecco. There are romantic elements, but the real story is on Cat's self-discovery and the mystery of her mother. The title is a bit misleading, though; Cat doesn't speak Italian and doesn't really make an attempt to learn to do so.
opinionminion More than 1 year ago
The writing was unchallenging and the characters were fairly shallow. Overall, I felt that the author had too many plots and too many loose ends that she hurried to tie up in the end. I admit that the end was better than I had expected, but it wasn't worth reading the entire book.
Jeffismom More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. I've never been to Italy and I felt I got a real "flavor" of Rome. I like Cat Connolly a great deal...I feel like her in some ways and I think most people will recognize a little of themselves in her. Her friendship with Karina is quite real and funny. I liked watching Cat's growth and her realization that her dreams matter, too! I think you'll really like this book!
TallCoolOne More than 1 year ago
As a fan of Kristin Harmel's past books, I was very eager to read this one and was not disappointed. While I found it a little more serious than some of her past titles, I felt that the story and character development were both deep and touching. I especially liked and related to Cat's age issues. Harmel's lighthearted, often laugh-out-loud funny touch is evident here, but I feel she dug deeper and gave us a very well-rounded and likable character for whom we can all cheer and relish her victories. One of my favorite things about the book was Harmel's descriptions of Italy... I've never been, but I truly felt like I was there when I was reading it. Very evocative, very detailed. I really liked the parallels to Roman Holiday, and found the ties to it to be charming without seeming like a rip-off. Cat's self-discovery is empowering and uplifting. I would highly recommend this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Nice quick to read romance novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good read.
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jobar More than 1 year ago
A bittersweet story set mostly in the Eternal City of Rome. Just reading it made me feel I was back there again among the ancient ruins and the current city with its amazing small restaurants and, most of all, the wonderful Italian people. This was my first book by this author but I am already planning to read more!
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DanaTX More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed the story line, was a great book to read while traveling, it did make me want to go to italy. I wish the ending was in more detail, i felt it needed more to it. But overall a good read. Will read more of her work.
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