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Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite
Set in 1937, Italy, Angelo Grimani is trying to find a way to keep his Reschen Valley reservoir in his own hands, but he is struggling. He needs the help of a local and the only person he knows who can help him is his ex, Katharina Steinhauser. But it is not as easy as that because soon he discovers that they have a daughter named Annemarie. However, it is Annemarie whose life comes crashing down. She already feels confined in her rural surroundings and it turns out that the boy she likes is her brother. Devastated, she is looking for a way out of this life so she can pursue her dreams, but life seems to have other plans for her. What can she do to make her life the way she wants it to be? Can she even get what she wants?
Bolzano is the third novel in A Reschen Valley Novel series by Chrystyna Lucyk-Berger and it is perhaps one of the most well-constructed novels I have read so far this year. Set in pre-World War Two Italy, the novel is reminiscent of a time in which things might seem simple, yet they were anything but that. I enjoyed the fact that nothing was rushed. The characters were given enough time and page space to develop fully and make their growth believable. Self-discovery is a major theme of the novel and so is finding peace within one’s self. Annemarie is a conflicted young woman and her life hasn’t been easy, but that doesn’t stop her from trying hard to find a place where she can feel comfortable. She is a character that stood out from the very beginning and I believe that she will stay in my heart and my mind for a long, long time. Very well written and entertaining!