Review: The Second Date: Love Italian-American Style by Mary Lydon Simonsen

Posted July 15, 2018 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 21 Comments

Tags: , ,

Review: The Second Date: Love Italian-American Style by Mary Lydon Simonsen
The Second Date: Love Italian-American Style

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star
two-flames


Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Quail Creek
Released on June 7, 2009
Pages: 176
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
add to goodreads

The Delight

With a heritage as rich as her mother’s Italian food, Sonia Amundsen is waiting for the perfect man.  At least, that is what she tells herself when she pushes away perfectly good men and goes on blind dates with men she knows are unavailable.  But will she push away Mr. Perfect when the time comes, too?  Big boisterous Italian family, brutally honest best friend, and a blind date mix-up come together for love Italian American- style.

Review

With a heritage as rich as her mother’s Italian food, Sonia Amundsen is waiting for the perfect man. At least, that is what she tells herself when she pushes away perfectly good men and goes on blind dates with men she knows are unavailable. But will she push away Mr. Perfect when the time comes, too? Big boisterous Italian family, brutally honest best friend, and a blind date mix-up come together for love Italian American- style.

I’ve loved this author’s wry humor and down to earth writing since I picked up her modern historical Searching for Pemberley. I’ve had The Second Date on my shelf forever and knew I would love it, but it was only now that I delved into a lush, colorful, and heartwarming story about not just a heroine, but her whole family.

In fact, this is part romance and part women’s fiction. I say that because the romance wasn’t central in story for quite a bit of it, but Sonia’s life and family was. It transitioned at the half-way point and the romance to a stronger role. I point this out so the reader goes in with the right expectations.

The book actually opened with a prologue starting with Sonia’s grandparents and then her parents. It then told Sonia’s story in past and present vignettes of how she came to be an almost thirty-year old woman looking like a Norwegian bombshell, but all Italian on the inside. How as a successful career woman in the publishing industry with with looks, personality, and talent became a serial dater. And, how Sonia fit into a large, supportive, crazy family with all their quirks and life. When the hero is introduced, it was a funny chance meet that tickled my fancy. His history was told, albeit more abruptly, just like Sonia’s and then the story progressed.

The romance was as quirky as their earlier separate stories. I loved how he worked past Sonia’s issues and she does have them. The whole point was to get Sonia to have a second date with the same guy. He definitely worked for it and then there was a surprise twist that opened Sonia’s eyes. I enjoyed this pair together especially once their force of nature families were part of it.

At the point where I was exposed to her dumping perfectly great guys and going out with tons of guys on blind dates at her favorite restaurants, it might seem like she’s a user. Sonia wasn’t using these guys she dated and she generally helped put them in a better spot to have their own chance at happiness afterward. And, yes, she went out with and ended up walking away from a few worthy guys, but she stopped when it stopped working for her. She knew what she wanted and I applaud her for not just settling. She’s a sweetheart, too, so that helped.

For those who love big humorous family stories, that is very much present. I definitely loved this as much as Sonia’s eventual romance. There were some definite laugh out loud moments, food, fights, family and community traditions, and so many times I was nodding and sighing because it was all to familiar. I just wanted to settle back and enjoy being in this familiar-feeling world and keep reading about the family antics, tradition, and love. Those who enjoy this style of romance set in the middle of a family story should definitely give this a go.

 

Challenges

Romance Roundabout #209 CR
Mt. TBR #77
COYER Summer #4
Let’s Read Indie #68
Books N Tunes #28 Dean Martin’s That’s Amore Tune:  Dean Martin’s That’s Amore

Recommendations

 
0 0 vote
Article Rating
The following two tabs change content below.
I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
21 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
RO
RO
1 year ago

You went way back with Dean Martin Super Sophia, and I love it! This sounds like a really good read, and one worth checking out. It almost sounds good enough to be turned into a movie too! Hugs…and Happy Sunday! RO

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  RO

I just had to, Ro. It needed Dino. 🙂 Enjoy your Sunday, too, Radiant Ro! 🙂

Carole Rae
Carole Rae
1 year ago

Sounds legit tbh. Love isn’t the main focal point until one gets it. The dating and honeymoon stage. This does sound good and Italian families are always fun!1

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  Carole Rae

I thought so, too, Carole. The flow of life and love felt in good balance. Ha! Yes, the Italian family aspect had me chuckling.

Mary Kirkland
Mary Kirkland
1 year ago

Big families in stories usually make for fun stories.

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  Mary Kirkland

For sure, Mary! This family was nuts at times. LOL

Angie Elle
Angie Elle
1 year ago

This does sound like a fun story! I love books about boisterous families. I’m glad you enjoyed this one.

On another note, I got the movie Moonstruck from the library and watched it for the first time two days ago. How timely your posts are! Now I want to watch Only You with Marisa Tomei and Robert Downey, Jr. LOL

Great review!

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  Angie Elle

Haha! Poor Angie! I’ve drowned you with Italian Americans. Oh, but yes, I do love those movies. 🙂

vvb
vvb
1 year ago

I like the sound of the Italian style family involvement in this – makes it sound kind of cozy. Your music matchup is a cute one too.

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  vvb

Yes, it felt very cozy the way the family are all deeply involved in each other’s lives.

Had to go with Dino on this one. 🙂

herding cats
herding cats
1 year ago

Oh yes. The big families can be as awesome to spend time with as the romance 🙂 Glad you enjoyed it!

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  herding cats

Definitely agree, Anna! There was such a great feeling to this story.

Evie
Evie
1 year ago

This sounds like My Bib Fat Greek Wedding. I lcan’t be stories like that. They feel more real. Glad you enjoyed it!

Evie
Evie
1 year ago

Okay. Obviously auto correct is doing its thing in all the wrong ways. I meant it sounds like My Big Fat Greek Wedding. I LOVE stories like that (no idea where autocorrect got can’t from lol).

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  Evie

LOL, autocorrect is the devil sometimes.

Yes, much like Big Fat Greek Wedding!

Carole @ Carole's Random Life in Books
Carole @ Carole's Random Life in Books
1 year ago

I do like stories that involve big families. It just adds such a nice element. Glad you enjoyed this one!

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago

Yes, it was just what I was in the mood for and enjoyed getting to know the whole large boisterous family with a side of romance. 🙂

Stephanie Jane
1 year ago

This one sounds fun! I prefer stories where there’s more to it than just a romance

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephanie Jane

I will read a straight up romance and love several, but I do prefer when there are other elements like a big family element that’s in this one.

Kimberly Caffeinated Reviewer

I like that she helped the guys find their happy.

Sophia Rose
Sophia Rose
1 year ago

I thought that was cute and helped show that she wasn’t trying to use them.