Monday, July 03, 2017

My Italian Bulldozer by Alexander McCall Smith

Paul Stewart is a highly successful Scottish author of books on food and wine. But his four-year relationship with girlfriend Becky cannot claim the same success. He finds himself in a crippling funk after having been kicked to the curb by Becky for her personal trainer. Depressed and unable to find the motivation needed to finish his current Tuscan cookbook, his editor, Gloria, recommends he travel to Tuscany for inspiration and to repair his broken heart.

So Paul sets off for Montalcino, a small Tuscan village. But shortly after touching down in Pisa, he gets mixed up in a series of wacky situations that land him in jail and leave him stranded without a rental car. With tourist season in full swing, his only remaining option to reach Montalcino is by, you guessed it, renting a bulldozer.

Although his time in Tuscany is intended to be one of quietude and healing, it proves otherwise. Paul’s tranquil routine of writing and daily excursions is soon disrupted when on his return to Montalcino from a nearby vineyard, he encounters a car plunged head first into a ditch. Its occupant, Anna, is a captivating Art Historian from the States. Paul offers her a ride back to the village on his bulldozer and it’s not long before romantic sparks begin to fly. Then to confound the situation, ex-girlfriend Becky shows up looking for forgiveness but wanting a little something more. Things get even more complicated when Gloria, who’s been secretly smitten with Paul for years, arrives in town with the excuse of helping shield Paul from Becky’s scheming ways. Find out how this cookbook writer manages to navigate through a very messy predicament.

I found My Italian Bulldozer, from the author of the beloved No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, to be a pleasurable summertime read. The book incorporates just the right amount of humor with a generous sprinkling of quirky characters. It’s basically the quintessential book for lounging at the pool or relaxing on the beach. You might also enjoy reading An Irish Country Love Story by Patrick Taylor and, of course, other titles by Alexander McCall Smith.

No comments: