She ran away through the pine trees when the soldiers came. Staggering into the hiding place, she felt a fluttering in her belly, like a butterfly grazing its wings, and knew instantly she had something to fight for.
Present day: When her fianc is tragically killed in an accident, twenty-six-year-old Alba is convinced she's to blame. Heavy with grief and guilt, she flees to her childhood home - the tiny village of Rofelle, nestled in a remote Tuscan valley. Out hiking one day to fill the long, lonely hours, she finds a mahogany box filled with silverware, hidden near the vine-covered ruins of an isolated house left abandoned after World War II. Could finding the rightful owner ease Alba's heartache, and somehow make amends for her own wrongs?
In search of answers, Alba meets Massimo, an elderly man who wants to spend his final years pruning his fruit trees, alone with his painful memories. His face turns pale when Alba brings up the war, but she senses that their shared grief connects them. An unlikely friendship grows as little by little Massimo speaks of Lucia: a wild young girl with sparkling eyes who fell in love with an enemy soldier, bravely stole precious Italian treasures back from Nazi occupiers, and whose selfless courage and sacrifice altered the course of the war - and Massimo's life.
With each visit, Alba gets closer to unravelling the mystery of the silver, and they both start putting their ghosts to rest. But there's one part of Lucia's story that Massimo might never be able to share - and he's running out of time. Has Alba churned up emotions that are too painful to ever confront? Or, will unearthing a wartime secret that has lain buried for generations finally bring Massimo peace?
An absolutely beautiful and heartbreaking read that will sweep you away to the rugged mountains and lush olive groves of Tuscany. Fans of The Nightingale, Rhys Bowen and Julianne MacLean will be captivated.
What readers are saying about Angela Petch:
'Astounding... I don't think there is a single page that does not have you racing to read what happens next... heartbreaking... a riveting read, it is an enthralling experience... a must-read.' Giascribes
'Fantastic read... I loved this book... will grab you and hold onto you long after you put it down... an amazing story.' Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars
'Heartbreaking and compelling... A beautiful story, told with such emotion and feeling that it makes you forget where you are and what you are doing ' Stardust Book Reviews
'Boy what an emotional read... I felt myself welling up and on the verge of tears... written superbly.' The Ginger Book Geek
'Wow ... The writing is magnificent... A story of love, loss, secrets and hope... I have truly fallen in love... A beautiful, touching story that I would recommend to everyone.' Cooking the Books