Book Review & author interview: Beautiful Secret by Dana Faletti

Posted 17/10/2016 by Isabelle MBTL in review / 0 Comments

Book Review & author interview: Beautiful Secret by Dana FalettiBeautiful Secret by Dana Faletti
Published by Pandamoon Publishing on October 11, 2016
Genres: romance
Pages: 283
Source: Dana Faletti
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four-half-stars
two-flames

Beautiful Secret is set mostly in the lush French Ardennes and Southern Italy. It is the story of thirty-three year old Tate Robbins, a woman who has lost almost everything that is important to her in life. When Tate decides to travel from her hometown in the North of Pittsburgh to Europe, she expects an escape from the life that is falling apart around her. Having lost both parents, Tate jumps at the opportunity when her dying Nana urges her to journey across the sea. Nana provides Tate with the vague directive to go and visit Luisa, Nana’s sister-in-law and best friend, that Luisa has something for her. It is Nana’s dying wish, so Tate hops a plane, leaving behind a failing marriage and not much else. She finds what she never knew she needed in her long-lost European family and a forbidden love affair. Alongside Tate’s narrative, Nana Maria’s story is told from her point of view and timeframe. Maria’s story is woven in between Tate’s. The tale takes place in 1940’s Calabria, where she was born and lived for the first twenty years of her life. In her own voice, Maria spins the saga of growing up in the poor rural town of Tronca in the mountains, being seduced by her cousin’s older fiancé, Giuseppe, and becoming pregnant with his love child.
Europe enraptures Tate almost immediately. Not only does the rich culture make her feel more alive than she’s felt in ages, but she finds herself completely taken with her French and Italian family. When she becomes undeniably attracted to her distant cousin by marriage, Michel, a man with a tragic past like hers, Tate’s emotions begin to unravel from the knot they’ve been tied in far too long. Torn between a magnetic pull toward the sexy Michel and a commitment to the philandering man who is technically still her husband, Tate looks forward to leaving France to travel to Italy. Before Tate leaves France, Luisa gives her an envelope and an address with directions to find the location and give the envelope to the man who lives there. Tate agrees, and she is off to experience Italy and discover her Nana’s secrets, find a new love, and a host of distant relatives she never knew about.

 

 

 

Beautiful Secret

Dana Faletti

 

beautiful-secret-cover

 

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interview

 

 

1- What were your favorite books growing up and why?
As a young child, I loved the Narnia Series. I loved the adventure and the idea that magic can exist right beneath your nose – In the Wardrobe!  By 5th grade, I was reading adult books, and my favorite series was V.C. Andrews – Flowers in The Attic. I also started to read Danielle Steel and Dean R. Koontz – 2 totally different genres. I read everything I could get my hands on. Another of my favorite books as a kid was Anna To The Infinite Power.
2- Do you have a best day in writing career so far? 
My best day was last year when I visited my daughter’s 4th grade classroom to talk  books and writing and she told me she was proud of me. Hands down, that was the best feeling ever. Another special moment that I’ll never forget is when Pandamoon Publishing made me an offer for Beautiful Secret. This book means a lot to me and has been in the works for a long time!
3- What about your worst day? Have you even thought about giving up on writing?
There is a lot of rejection in this field. I met a literary agent at a conference, and we really connected. We met for coffee later, and she expressed interest in Beautiful Secret. I really wanted her to rep me, and when she rejected it after reading the full, she gave no feedback whatsoever. I felt this was bad practice and was extremely disappointed. Yes, I have wanted to give up for a minute or two here and there, but I will never stop writing. It is, for me, a means of expression.
4- Are you a full time writer? How does your family take this?
They are very supportive! Yes, I write full-time, but I’m also a full-time parent, and my family comes first for me.
6- List story ideas you hope to tackle in the future .
Right now I am working on a middle grade novel about 3 sisters who move from Florida to Pittsburgh into their mother’s grandmother’s old house. Amidst rumors that the house is haunted, the girls discover that the noises coming from their shared attic bedroom are not a ghost at all but a summons from another world. When they travel through a portal to The Planet Zozo, they meet Tabupu who explains that not only are they descendants of Zozoan royalty, but that their help is needed to save Zozo. The planet’s dual social caste system is in crisis. The Claypoles, the “beautiful people” of Zozo, have been bullying the underdog Edens, and a large number of Edens have chosen to remove themselves from society by going underground, essentially delving into an optional sleep from which they are unable to wake on their own.  Ever.
Because Zozo is such a small planet – about the size of Texas – and because each Zozoan has its own special function to keep the plannet spinning, the ecosystem is failing without some of its key workers.  Lucy – 14, Lana-11 and Lillian-7 must excavate and rehabilitate the Edens and educate the Claypoles in order for The Planet Zozo to survive, and unless they succeed in saving the planet, they can’t get back home. Throughout their journey, the 3 girls must face their own struggles including anxiety, selfishness, and lack of self-confidence.
The story came from a bedtime tale I used to tell my own daughters. The idea of the bullied Edens burying themselves was inspired by the heartbreaking number of teen suicides that have occurred in my small town and the horrendous bullying I witness on a weekly basis. I’m a strong believer in purpose and unique paths. I believe that each one of us is put on Earth to connect with other souls, do good works and learn something, and in writing this story, I hope to impart that truth as well as entertain. This one is basically for my kids.
7- What inspire you to write this book, Beautiful Secret?
Beautiful Secret was inspired by my own Nana Maria’s story. She actually gave birth to my father in a home for unwed mothers in Southern Italy and rose from that tragic circumstance to raise a family that is unlike any other. She put her own happiness and satisfaction aside in order to make a better life for her kids and grandkids, and she was the ultimate role model for me. She gave love to everyone she met. She was one amazing lady.
It was also inspired by my many travels to visit family overseas, specifically in France and Italy. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of my European cousins, aunts and uncles. I first met them when I was twenty years old, and I haven’t stopped loving them since. Italy holds my most precious heartbeats, and that is why I set the book there.

Thank you Dana, for answering our questions and giving us a little glimpse into your life.

 

 

review by

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Romantic; heartbreaking; beautiful!!!

 

review 1

 

 

  • Cover- I really like the cover. It was the first thing that caught my attention. I love Italy and it would be impossible for me not to fall in love with that view and want to read this book.
  • Plot- WOW!!! O.M.G!!! Really, I’m so impressed with Ms. Faletti’s writing that I’m speechless. She masterfully wrote an incredible plot that intertwined Tatiana and her grandmother’s story in a way that sometimes I felt overwhelmed with emotions. Also, the setting Ms. Faletti has  created is so real, that you can feel the heat, the sun, the sand, Italy, France.
  • Characters- I like the characters. I love Nana, and I really like Tate’s entire family. I’ve really liked Tatiana, but sometimes I was like… NO… choose differently! You can do it! I’ve suffered with some of her choices.
  • Heat/Romance- This is a very romantic story, that has been painstakingly written by the author. I cried so much with this book that I don’t even know how I have ended it.
  • Addictiveness- It is a very addictive book, but at the same time, it was so intense that I had to take myself away from it a few times. I did read a couple of funny, fun, short entertainment in-between.
  • Freshness- Have I mentioned how Ms. Faletti’s writing is unbelievable? Really, it all felt so fresh, new, unique that I can’t even describe that.

 

 

Review 2

 

 

  • The End- I’m sorry I didn’t like the end, and I did took out half star because of it.

 

 

 

my-thoughts

 

 

I believe that everything I will say here it will end up being spoiler, so I will hide for those that wouldn’t like to read it.

I was an emotional mess after reading this. In fact, I still feel like I cannot do this book justice, because I’m unable to explain myself correctly in midst of this emotional turmoil. I have finished this book for two weeks now, but I still find it hard to get my emotions in check.

View Spoiler »

At the end of the day, I have to say Ms. Faletti has excelled here. This is what reading is all about, a truly cathartic experience!

 

 

You MAY buy this book because you can’t resist its cover; you SHOULD buy this book because you love a great romance; you MUST READ this because  it is UNFORGETTABLE!!!

4.5

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four-half-stars

About Dana Faletti

Dana Faletti is an author with Pandamoon Publishing. Prior to signing with Pandamoon, she wrote and published THE WHISPER TRIOLOGY: a young adult paranormal romance series. Her debut women’s fiction novel, BEAUTIFUL SECRET, is a sweeping drama of family secrets and forbidden love that is set to be released by Pandamoon in Summer of 2016.

Dana writes poetry as a survival skill and loves to connect with other writers both online and in person. When she’s not writing, Dana can be found reading on her Kindle, cooking something delicious, or daydreaming about her upcoming travel destinations. She lives in in a suburb of Pittsburgh with her husband, three young daughters, and a snarky Shichon called Dolce.

Rating Report
Addictiveness
five-stars
Character
five-stars
Cover
four-stars
Freshness
two-stars
Plot
four-half-stars
Romance
five-stars
Overall: four-half-stars