One Italian Summer – Review


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: two weeks in Positano, the magical town 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.


I was recommended this novel by my Nana and friend T.

First of all, I loved the imagery, and the way the chapters flowed together. This is definitely a book you can get lost in. I think this is also what kept my interest throughout the book, outside of the fact that Katy was seeing a young version of her mother all the way in Italy after her mother’s death.

Katy was a complex character with a strong voice. I liked that she wasn’t perfect. It seems I’m drawn to reading flawed characters lately? But that aside, you can really get a sense of her heartbreak. I have mixed feelings about her as a character, and I believe many readers do. As I mentioned, she’s flawed. Her attachment and reliance on her mother, Carol is a lot. She’s selfish, but I think throughout the novel, after she meets this younger Carol, she starts to grow.

One thing I will add, is that I feel horrible for poor Eric. I really do, and the twists in this novel…like damn, I wasn’t prepared.

Overall, I had a lot of fun reading and I look forward to seeing what Rebecca Serle puts out next!
Thank you for this story.


Rating: 5 out of 5.

If it weren’t for that last chunk there at the end I probably would’ve leaned toward 4 stars. I almost thought about giving it a 3.5 when Katy referred to Adam as an “alpha” because I physically cringed. However, it was the transportation, the fact that despite how Katy can be unlikeable at times…or make questionable decisions, I don’t hate her as a character. She feels human. For all that is flawed with Katy, is what helps contribute to the events that lead us to the conclusion of the story…and that to me is why I gave it a solid 5 star review.

But for Eric, I would give 4.5…because that poor little fella…


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