One Italian Summer: A Novel (Hardcover)
March 2022 Indie Next List
“One Italian Summer is pure magic. Rebecca Serle marvelously creates a literary world that feels full and alive, like I can catch a flight with Katy and experience Italy alongside her. This treasure of a book is sure to delight readers.”
— Kaitlin Smith, Copperfield's Books Healdsburg, Healdsburg, CA
Rebecca Serle’s latest and quite possibly greatest novel is the perfect escape. If you are itching to travel, but are busy with work, responsibilities, or life in general, this book can fill that void! I had a blast with this book, as it was my maiden voyage into listening to audio books. It is available on Libro.fm (click for direct link and sample), and is read by the wonderful, witty Lauren Graham. As the star of the best show ever (Gilmore Girls), Graham could not have been a better fit for reading this moving mother-daughter story. Katy and her mother were the very best of friends. The book version of Lorelei and Rory Gilomore (how fitting, right?); absolutely inseparable. Thus, it was all the more devastating when Katy’s mother, Carol, died of cancer two weeks before they were supposed to embark on the greatest trip of all time: two weeks in Positano, Italy. Katy ultimately decides to take a leap of faith and go on her own. Once she arrives in Positano, things get a little wacky when her mother appears at age thirty as if preserved in time. The events that follow explore grief, love, and identity. Not only was this a wonderful depiction of relationships, but it put the reader right in Positano alongside Katy with wonderful descriptions of food, culture, scenery, and locals. Serle wrote, “From high up on the winding road, you can see the entirety of the town. Colorful hotels and houses sit chiseled into the rocks as if they were painted there. The entire town is built around the cove of the sea. It looks like an amphitheater, enjoying the performance of the ocean.” Travel to Italy from the comfort of your living room and keep a bowl of gelato on hand. Bookseller's orders!— Reilly
“[A] magical trip worth taking.” —Associated Press
“Rebecca Serle is a maestro of love in all its forms.” —Gabrielle Zevin, New York Times bestselling author
The New York Times bestselling author of In Five Years returns with a powerful novel about the transformational love between mothers and daughters set on the breathtaking Amalfi Coast.
When Katy’s mother dies, she is left reeling. Carol wasn’t just Katy’s mom, but her best friend and first phone call. She had all the answers and now, when Katy needs her the most, she is gone. To make matters worse, their planned mother-daughter trip of a lifetime looms: to Positano, the magical town where Carol spent the summer right before she met Katy’s father. Katy has been waiting years for Carol to take her, and now she is faced with embarking on the adventure alone.
But as soon as she steps foot on the Amalfi Coast, Katy begins to feel her mother’s spirit. Buoyed by the stunning waters, beautiful cliffsides, delightful residents, and, of course, delectable food, Katy feels herself coming back to life.
And then Carol appears—in the flesh, healthy, sun-tanned, and thirty years old. Katy doesn’t understand what is happening, or how—all she can focus on is that she has somehow, impossibly, gotten her mother back. Over the course of one Italian summer, Katy gets to know Carol, not as her mother, but as the young woman before her. She is not exactly who Katy imagined she might be, however, and soon Katy must reconcile the mother who knew everything with the young woman who does not yet have a clue.
Rebecca Serle’s next great love story is here, and this time it’s between a mother and a daughter. With her signature “heartbreaking, redemptive, and authentic” (Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author) prose, Serle has crafted a transcendent novel about how we move on after loss, and how the people we love never truly leave us.
“Rebecca Serle is known for her powerful stories that tug at the heartstrings – and her latest is just as unforgettable.” —Woman's World
“An unconventional love story that embraces people’s flaws and selfishness as part of what makes them human.” —Kirkus
“Poignant and ultimately uplifting. The mouthwatering descriptions of Katy’s food and the lush Italian coast bring a strong, atmospheric sense of place. Recommend to fans of Helen Fisher’s Faye, Faraway (2021) and those who enjoy being transported to other countries through fiction.” —Booklist
“A touching story…the mother-daughter bond is made palpable through Katy’s grief and desire for connection.” —Publishers Weekly
"Going down as easy as a limoncello on a hot summer’s day, this daydream of a story affirms what it means to love and be loved. An enchanting book for the last cold days of winter, but also suggest it to readers come summer.” —Library Journal
“In these cynical times full of snark and memes, it’s nice to surrender to magic every now and then. Plus, the wanderlust that the book conjures is worth it as is….[A] story about love, loss and that point in adulthood where we learn our parents are human, too, and not always perfect.” —Associated Press
“[A] moving novel.” —PopSugar
Praise for In Five Years:
“What would you do if you glimpsed your life five years from now—and found that it was different, in every way, from what you hoped for and expected? Rebecca Serle pairs this inspired premise with deft, propulsive prose and characters who feel as real as friends. In Five Years is as clever as it is moving, the rare read-in-one-sitting novel you won’t forget.” —CHLOE BENJAMIN, New York Times bestselling author of The Immortalists
“Serle takes a fairly generic rom-com setup and turns it into something much deeper in this captivating exploration of friendship, loss, and love.” —Booklist
"The novel is about the real meaning of love and friendship and the bonds that tie us all together."
— Good Morning America
“Heartbreaking, redemptive, and authentic in all the ways that make a book impossible to put down, I fell in love with this story. In five years, I will still be thinking about this beautiful novel.” —JAMIE FORD, New York Times bestselling author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
“I adored In Five Years, it’s so poignant and tender. It broke my heart, such an unusual idea executed brilliantly, I didn’t see that twist coming! I’m a sucker for great love stories, and this one is just lovely. A keeper on my shelf!” —JOSIE SILVER, author of #1 New York Times bestseller and Reese’s Book Club pick One Day in December
“In Five Years is more than just a love story; it’s a half dozen of them, none quite what you expect. Heartwarming, heartbreaking, and hard to put down, it’s a novel about romance, friendship, the magic of good bagels, and what happens after you get everything you always wanted.” —LAURIE FRANKEL, author of New York Times bestseller and Reese Witherspoon Hello Sunshine pick This Is How It Always Is
“A heartwarming portrait of a broken heart finding a little healing magic.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Serle’s whimsical tale is book club catnip.” —Publishers Weekly
“In Five Years is a profound tale of unconditional love and anguish with a touch of the mystical and mysterious.”
—New York Journal of Books
“You'll devour it.”
“Rebecca Serle has a way of blending a little bit of magic into the every day.”
“Rebecca Serle has a knack for writing beautiful stories that speak to the anxiety of forging a new road for oneself, of being brave enough to start all over.”
“Be prepared for deep emotions, a few laughs, and possibly a few tears as well. Reading this book is truly an experience.”
—Seattle Book Review