There are a few authors whom I’ve come to love through their books and by meeting them several times in real life and T.A. Williams is one of those authors so when Rachel of Rachel’s Random Resources invited me to participate in the blog tour for Dreaming of Verona I couldn’t resist.
I have also reviewed Trevor’s Chasing Shadows here, Dreaming of Venice here and To Provence, With Love here and Dreaming of Christmas here.There’s also an extract from Dreaming of St Tropez that you can read here.
Dreaming of Verona
Verona is the City of Love. But will Suzie find romance there or, like Romeo and Juliet, will it all end in tears?
When Suzie is hired to accompany spoiled, abrasive Lady Alexandra Tedburn on an all-expenses paid holiday to Italy, she fears the trip will be a disaster.
But she soon discovers there’s more to Alex than shopping and tantrums, and she’s determined to help her realise her potential – against Alex’s authoritarian father’s wishes.
As they settle in Verona, Suzie can’t stop thinking about local artist Michael, who is still mourning the tragic death of his wife. With Suzie’s future uncertain, and Michael’s past
holding him back, it seems there’s no hope for romance in the city of
star-crossed lovers… or is there?
A gorgeously uplifting and moving story, Dreaming of Verona is the perfect read for fans of Holly Martin, Tilly Tennant and Jenny Oliver.
My Review of Dreaming of Verona
Suzie’s new job will bring more than she thought.
It was such a pleasure to read another T.A. Williams book because I knew I would be transported to another place comprehensively, that somewhere I’d find a black Labrador and there would be challenge and romance along the way. I wasn’t disappointed. In Dreaming of Verona there’s the flowing, engaging style I’ve come to enjoy from this author so that I felt relaxed and confident that my expectations would be met.
In Dreaming of Verona T.A. Williams has created the perfect setting. I’ve never had any desire to visit the area before reading this book and now I’m desperate to go. His attention to detail and the use of the senses is exemplary so that I was completely immersed in Italian culture and geography. My only complaint is that I was desperately hungry throughout my reading. The descriptions of food are wonderful and actually made me salivate.
The plot is engaging and interesting, but especially enhanced by the Shakespearean themes and references. However, a reader doesn’t need to be able to make the links in Dreaming of Verona, to enjoy this story completely. Universal themes of parental dominance and control, friendship, education, grief, love, ambition, a sense of personal identity and self-worth give layers to Dreaming of Verona that elevate it above a simple love story, although it can be read in that way too. I also loved the wind surfing element of the book. It felt vivid and real giving added depth to the action and also to Suzie’s character.
And I thoroughly enjoyed meeting Suzie, Alex and the others. I felt every single person in this story developed and changed so that it was as if I were reading about real people who have to learn to deal with what life throws at them. The concept that money cannot buy happiness and that you have to be your own person and shape your own future in spite of your past, that Alex learns in particular, resonated with me profoundly.
Dreaming of Verona is a lovely book. It’s romantic with dynamic action and vivid characters. It draws in the reader and entertains them royally. I really recommend it.
T.A. Williams lives in Devon with his Italian wife. He was born in England of a Scottish mother and Welsh father. After a degree in modern languages at Nottingham University, he lived and worked in Switzerland, France and Italy, before returning to run one of the best-known language schools in the UK. He’s taught Arab princes, Brazilian beauty queens and Italian billionaires. He speaks a number of languages and has travelled extensively. He has eaten snake, still-alive fish, and alligator. A Spanish dog, a Russian bug and a Korean parasite have done their best to eat him in return. His hobby is long-distance cycling, but his passion is writing.
But let’s see what Trevor has to say about himself:
I’m a man. And a pretty old man as well. I did languages at university a long time ago and then lived and worked in France and Switzerland before going to Italy for seven years as a teacher of English. My Italian wife and I then came back to the UK with our little daughter (now long-since grown up) where I ran a big English language school for many years. We now live in a sleepy little village in Devonshire. I’ve been writing almost all my life but it was only seven years ago that I finally managed to find a publisher who liked my work enough to offer me my first contract.
The fact that I am now writing romantic comedy is something I still find hard to explain. My early books were thrillers and historical novels. Maybe it’s because there are so many horrible things happening in the world today that I feel I need to do my best to provide something to cheer my readers up. My books provide escapism to some gorgeous locations and, as a writer, I obviously have to go there in person and check them out first. I love my job…