BOOK REVIEW: Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch


Title: Love & Gelato
Author: Jenna Evans Welch
Publication: May 3, 2016
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Genre: Teen, YA Fiction, Clean Romance
Pages: 417


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SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)

“I made the wrong choice.”

Lina is spending the summer in Tuscany, but she isn’t in the mood for Italy’s famous sunshine and fairy-tale landscape. She’s only there because it was her mother’s dying wish that she get to know her father. But what kind of father isn’t around for sixteen years? All Lina wants to do is go back home.

But then she is given a journal that her mom had kept when she lived in Italy. Suddenly Lina’s uncovering a magical world of secret romances, art, and hidden bakeries. A world that inspires her, along with the ever-so-charming Ren, to follow in her mother’s footsteps and unearth a secret that has been kept for far too long. It’s a secret that will change everything she knew about her mother, her father—and even herself.

People come to Italy for love and gelato, someone tells her, but sometimes they discover much more.


I originally found this book on Thriftbooks. I knew that I had to buy it because it took place in Italy.   I have always had a huge soft spot for Italy.  It’s a place that I could visit over and over and never tire of it.  I was excited to start reading it.  Then I discovered that it was available for free from Kindle Unlimited….why I didn’t check there in the first place I will never know but oh well.  I couldn’t wait to read it.

Lina always thought she knew her Mom.  All that changed when her mother died of pancreatic cancer when Lina was still in high school.  Lina goes to live with her Dad who she didn’t know existed in Italy.  While there she learns more about her Mom then she ever knew possible.  Things that will change her life.  This book was really good.  I enjoyed the entire thing and it kept me engaged the whole time.  I loved the descriptions of Florence.  Having been there I could see the things that she was describing as I read them.  It was really fun to be able to do that.  I thought the author wrote about grief in a very relatable way especially for a teenager.  It is something that maybe a teen who is reading the book could relate too. 

The message that the author also wrote about what the you don’t have to be a biological parent in order to care for and parent someone. This book really has it all.  There was teen romance and secretive relationships.  There is a mystery and history.  I loved the way that Lina grew as the book went on.  She started out one way and finished another.  She learned about her mother and the life she had before she had her.  This is definitely a clean romance that teens can read. There is two more books in this “series” and I have both of them in my to be read piles. I can’t wait to see what those are about one is in Ireland and the other in Greece.  They don’t have the same cast of characters.  

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