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At 470 pages The Shoemaker's Wife is Adriana Trigiani's longest novel to date. It is also the perfect blend of everything this author does so well. Her Italian characters and their heritage play a big part of each novel and this one is no exception.
This book weaves together the story of two young Italians: Enza and Cirro who meet in their youth, but who both relocate to America for different reasons. As young immigrants they encounter each other again a few times, but despite their attraction to each other nothing works out for the pair. As the book proceeds we watch how they form a life in America without the help of their families. Although this book is character driven, I enjoyed watching the passage of time in our country as Enza and Cirro grow up and begin a family. From their arrival at Ellis Island to Enza's work sewing for the Metropolitan Opera House, they are both affected by World War I and other developemnts on the world's stage. Trigiani was able to recreate this time period and I was able to truly feel I was a part of what Enza and Cirro were experiencing.
My synopsis is short, and there is certainly much more that develops within this book that spans nearly all of Enza's life. But rather than tell you every even that befalls this remarkable woman, I encourage you to read her story for yourself. The Shoemaker's Wife is Adriana Trigiani at her best.