So 2011 is NOT off to a good start for reading.
The Pillars of the Earth . .. Ok, seriously? Why didn't anybody warn me that I was about to begin a tome this violent? I invested 466 pages . . . 466 pages! before I gave up and quit. The story was really interesting, I just couldn't take one more rape or beheading.
I had to cleanse my brain after that and so I picked up Lucia, Lucia, by Adriana Trigiani. It was part of a stack of books someone had given me, and not one that I was all-too eager to read, but I was pleasantly surprised! What I expected to be cheesy-chick lit was actually a delightful read.
The story takes place in 1950's Manhattan, and Lucia is "the most beautiful girl in Greenwich Village." She is torn between her career as a seamstress, which she loves, and her many suitors. I especially loved the visual element in this book, and enjoyed "living" in her warm, lively Italian home and seeing fashion and design through her eyes, as well as the themes of feminism, love, and home. A really fun book!