Hi everyone! Today I’m taking part in the blog tour for Upstairs, Downstairs by Olivia Harte.
As always the cover image leads to a universal Amazon buy link for the book
Available on NetGalley to request here
Buy links: Amazon: here
Google Play: here
What they say: Secrets on your doorstep don’t stay secret for long… A romantic comedy perfect for fans of Debbie Johnson and Holly Martin.
When Daniele Bracci – a musician at Rome’s Opera Theatre arrives at his new apartment, he is surprised by the warm welcome he receives from his neighbours. Giovanna however, is more preoccupied with introducing him to her daughter Anita. But what she doesn’t know is that for the last two years, Anita has been secretly seeing someone else. When Anita is introduced to the new tenant, she has the shock of her life – Daniele was Anita’s first love at high school. Can she come to terms with the terrible way things ended between them? Anita isn’t the only one with something to hide… and none of these secrets go unnoticed by Pina, the apartment gossip who writes everything down in her secret diary…
The Review: This was the story of a group of people who lived in a group of apartments in Rome and their day to day life. They range in age, but in general are of an older age, which I appreciated. The youngest inhabitants were Anita, a very fiery, free spirited twenty eight year old tour guide who zips about on a moped, and Daniel, a musician who arrives to houseshare. There are secrets surrounding both and I suppose to jump straight in there were times I liked both, and times I didn’t, finding some of their reactions incredibly over dramatic, although at times they were funny too. If I’m honest in this book I accepted that a lot of the characters were fiery and passionate and dramatic and read on without them alienating me from the story.
Aside from these outbursts, there was an easygoing tone, very much heightened by descriptions of a veg garden they all share and regularly convene in that was bursting with vivid colours and wholesomeness and was so tangible that I wanted to be there. The apartment complex was similar, so real to me that it was like I was stepping into the ochre building walking through the stone archway with the dragons on the roof. This continued to other settings and I appreciated all the beauty the book had to offer.
There was also the secrets each of the ‘villagers,’ in particular that of Giovanna, Anieta’s mother, who was so so lovely. In fact the lovely characters balanced out the ones that weren’t so easy to like and I found myself swooning and smiling all over the place. I liked the comedy, had mixed reactions to characters, and was taken by the settings. Thanks so much to the lovely Melanie at Aria, an imprint of Head of Zeus, and to Netgalley for the book in return for an honest review.
About the author (wait for this, extremely intriguing!)
Olivia Hart is a collective group of authors who met five years ago on a writing course and then could no longer do without each other’s company. They decided to write a novel that would bind them forever.
Alice Avella writes because she is always lost in Wonderland. Se is an employee at the city hall in Rome and has worked in the movie industry.
Fabrio Franceschini is a worker by necessity and a writer by passion. In his life he has read and written many things. After this adventure he doesn’t have any specific projects for the future, but he likes to look at the glass half full.
Guido Fare lives in Rome. He avoids contradictions in order to fully enjoy them.
Anna Froscali began to write when she stopped working. Fromt he thriller genre she went on to romance. She sees life in colours: the colours of the countries she has visited, the colours of the fabrics she likes to sew, and the colours of the book covers that crwod her bookshelves.
Tiziana Isoni was born in Rome, but half of her genes are from Sardinia. She became a bit French with Erasmus. She studied Sciences, but with her creative imagination, since childhood she has transformed her perceptions into little poems. She works full time in computer science, looking for the free time to write.
Luca Pallini has experienced skiing, canoeing, trekking, and Cuban drums … before discovering writing. He had never imagined waking up one dayw ith a published novel! He works in the computer science sector, and he is always looking for something to discover, learn and maybe create.
Maurizio Pompei a gentle soul and curmudgeon, who effortlessly went from Roman archeological sites, that he studies with investigative methods, to thrillers. He is a collector of miniature soldiers and builds dioramas. He wrote a book of poems and one of short stories.
Antonietta Sciammarella, having put belly dancing behind her, looks for new, unexplored goals. Afetr she breaks into a house of secret loves, they won’t be secret any more.
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