His Italian Wife

“‘It’s been so long,’ I muttered, unsure of what exactly I was supposed to feel. I had missed him terribly because he had been the one person who had never made me feel like trash despite the worst parts of me coming to light…’

‘Don’t shut me out like that ever again,’ I stated in a small voice.

‘I was trying to get over you Lana and you don’t have to worry now, I’m here to stay,’ he whispered against her hair.” (His Italian Wife, Chapter Five)

“I saw a conflicted look reach her gaze even though she tried to hide it. That was the thing about Lana, she always thought she could handle stuff on her own and didn’t need anyone. Most of the time, she actually didn’t but there a few times that she had to admit she needed someone’s help even though she would never bring herself to actually ask for help. Her determination and resolve had been one of the things that had attracted me towards her in the first place…She looked even more mature and being a mother had actually proved to be in her favor, growing her curvier and gorgeous.” (His Italian Wife, Chapter Seven)

Lana was feeling on top of the world; as she turned twenty eight, her boyfriend and father of her child proposed. Her happiness does not last long when she finds out that Andrew bailed Rose, his ex-fiancé, out of prison. Lana cannot believe that her boyfriend would help the woman that tried to kill her and her son.  Andrew doesn’t understand why she is angry with him and her rage is doubled when she discovers him hanging out with Rose, though he claims that nothing is happening between them.

It has taken him a long time, but Nick has returned to Lana’s life fully over her.  She is forced to call Devon, Andrew’s estranged brother, to pick up the brothers’ father from her club. Devon still hates Rose for what she did to Lana and his nephew and makes his disdain for the woman clear. Though Lana, Nick, and Andrew’s child escaped the gunman’s sights, Andrew refuses to get rid of Rose. Lana is shocked and horrified to discover that Andrew has a child with Rose, one that was conceived and born while Lana and Andrew were together.  Will Lana forgive Andrew for this betrayal? Does Rose still plan to harm Lana and her child? Will she realize that her heart may belong to another?

This novel is the second book in the series, but it is not necessary to read the first to thoroughly enjoy the work. I would almost suggest ignoring the first novel, as this work will bring you up to speed quickly and enjoyably, driving you directly into action while answering any questions you may have about the past.  The hints and whispers of assassins and broken engagements make this a sequel that can stand alone and keep its reader engaged.

Lana runs a very successful club and has meaningful relationships with her employees, something that is nice to see. She is a career-driven female protagonist that is also devoted to her young child. While there has been clearly drama in her past, she is doing her best to create a strong future for herself and those she loves. Lana is a protagonist that characters can connect with on a real level; while there may be drama in her life, she stands up for herself and does whatever it takes to protect the ones she loves.

I like Lana as a protagonist; she is able to hold on to her anger when necessary. Too often we see female protagonists forgive and forget incredibly bad behavior on the part of their love interests.  Lana refuses to forgive Andrew for lying to her, endangering her and her son, and neglecting to tell her about his other child. Rose literally tried to kill several people, so Andrew thought it would be a good idea to bail her out of jail (not sure how he “bailed” her out of a five year sentence) and keep her freedom a secret from his fiancé.  Andrew truly sucks, and I was really happy to see that Lana wasn’t prepared to forgive him for some truly messed up actions and horrifying decisions that he has been keeping from her.

This novel balances ridiculous drama with realistic family issues. Devon and his brother Andrew are not on speaking terms at the beginning of the novel because they are siding with different parents during a divorce. While stories of near-misses dot the novel, the reader will be able to better relate with the tension between Nick and Lana. Once close friends, Nick has been gone in an attempt to get over his love for Lana. He has returned promising friendship and devotion, something that she desperately needs at the moment. Past heartbreaks are paired with the dramatic return of a woman who attempted to kill two people and a baby.  His Italian Wife knows how to balance crazy situations with realistic drama and intrigue.

Overall, this is an entertaining read that does not disappoint in terms of drama. His Italian Wife combines over the top drama with realistic family tension to create an engaging and interesting contemporary romance. Don’t worry if you haven’t read the first book in the series; you will be diving head first into the action with His Italian Wife.