From Rosanna Chiofalo comes a sumptuous novel that sweeps readers from the Italian-American enclave of Astoria, New York, to the stunning vistas of Rome, and introduces two very different women—in a story of friendship, love, and destiny…
In college, Pia Santore dreamed of going to New York and taking the Big Apple by storm with her younger sister Erica. Instead, Pia has arrived in Astoria, Queens, with a prestigious journalism internship at a celebrity magazine…and without Erica. Though the neighborhood has an abundance of appeal—including the delectable confections sold at her Aunt Antoniella’s bakery—the pain of losing Erica a few years ago still feels fresh.
Pia’s arrival coincides with an unexpected sighting. Italian movie icon Francesca Donata is rumored to be staying nearby, every bit as voluptuous and divaesque as in her heyday. With the help of a handsome local artist with ties to Francesca’s family, Pia convinces the legend to grant her a series of interviews—even traveling to her house in Rome. In the eternal city, Pia begins to unearth the truth behind the star’s fabled romances and tangled past. And here too, where beauty and history mingle in every breathtaking view, and hope shimmers in the Trevi fountain and on the Spanish Steps, Pia gradually learns how to love and when to let go. For when in Rome, you may find your carissima—your dearest one—and you may even find yourself…
Rosanna Chiofalo is a first-generation Italian American whose parents emigrated from Sicily to New York in the early 1960s. She is the author of Bella Fortuna and is currently hard at work writing her next novel. She and her husband live in New York City.
Advance Praise For Carissima
"What a glorious novel this is. It's a celebration of life, love and unlikely friendship through the eyes of two very different women. Yet their similarities bind them together and will endear them to readers long after the last page is turned. Bravissima for Carissima
!" --Susan Wiggs, # 1 New York Times
! I couldn’t put it down!” --Lisa Jackson, # 1 New York Times
Praise for Bella Fortuna
“Chiofalo brings the Italian immigrant community and neighborhoods richly to life.” —Publishers Weekly
“Reading Rosanna Chiofalo’s depiction of a modern Italian-American family is like digging into a fresh bowl of pasta—warm, welcome, and satisfying. A deeply felt debut that affirms the importance of friends and family—Italian-style.” --Lisa Verge Higgins, author of The Proper Care and Maintenance of Friendship
“Well-drawn characters…A charmer.” —BookPage
“Sometimes tough, sometimes tender, always heartfelt and honest, Bella Fortuna is a lively, finely-stitched tale of life and love, family and friendship, and a zest for cose Italiane!” --Peter Pezzelli, author of Home to Italy
“Chiofalo’s debut is an inspiring read about second chances with love after tremendous heartbreak… Readers with Italian-American backgrounds will definitely eat this one up!” —RT Book Reviews