Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Book Review: A Wedding in Lake Como

By Allyson Bales

Best friends Ava, Madison, and Chelsea made a pact to reunite for each other’s weddings when their careers sent them in different directions. But after one of them makes a choice that tears the group apart, an upcoming wedding might be their last chance to heal old wounds.

Ava is about to marry the man she loves in a lavish ceremony on the shores of Lake Como, but she’s haunted by the mistakes she’s made.

Madison’s made a name for herself as an influencer in the fashion world but is threatened by a scandal impacting everything she holds dear.

And Chelsea has the perfect family she always craved, but her professional dreams have fallen by the wayside.

As they return to Italy’s gorgeous coast, the three women revisit their life-changing first trip to Lake Como during college. When Madison comes face-to-face with the college sweetheart who was at the heart of one of the most pivotal times of her life, can they forge a new way forward? (Synopsis courtesy of Amazon.)

A Wedding in Lake Como was such an engaging story with exploration of so many meaningful themes, a backdrop of New York City and Italy, and characters you will hate and love with equal measure.

Probst's writing is so descriptive and thoughtful.  I have now done a deep dive of Brunate and Nesso, small towns in Italy I really want to explore as soon as possible, have a newfound appreciation for what celebrities go through, and need to talk to my best friend from college as soon as I am done writing this review!

This is a bingeable, quick read that made me think so much about true friendship.  I think so many of us can name at least one person we met in our twenties who really was there for the awkward, often bad-decision making, transitional time in our lives.  I think back on some of the choices that I made in my early twenties and cringe.  The three main characters in this story come together around the start of college and have their ups and downs.  I love how Probst explores what it means to hold grudges, forgive, and find your peace.  

I loved Maddie’s character the best. Maddie is an influencer but I think anyone can certainly relate to her.  

”I was a walking contradiction, shy and awkward inside, yet dying to be seen and recognized by others.”

Not only is she trying to make it in fashion where the demand to grow followers and find her own artistic voice is tough, but she’s also trying to piece herself back together after things change.  This story also depicted what happens when someone in the public eye makes one poor public mistake. Celebrities are human and I love how her character works on herself after that mistake.  I also really enjoyed the way Maddie’s brain processed things.  She is emotional but also balanced  and tries very hard to look at all perspectives.  

Maddie experiences something with her two best friends that changes everything, and I think most of us  can relate to what her character does to try to get back on track.  There is so much depth in the story and I was so invested in what happens to all of them!  To be honest, I would love another book in this Italy series with these characters!  

If you’re a fan of beautiful Italy or want to visit there someday, women’s fiction, and self-reflection, this is a book I think you’ll really enjoy!

Thanks to Berkley for the book in exchange for an honest review.

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