To most people, princes, princesses, counts and dukes are found only in the pages of the most famous of fairytales. Crowns, priceless jewels and gilded thrones belong only in childhood dreams.
But for some, these frivolous fancies are truth.
For some, they are real life.
On Manhattan’s Upper East Side, people have always treated me as someone special. All because of my ancestral name and legacy. All because of a connection I share to our home country’s most important family of all.
I am Caresa Acardi, the Duchessa di Parma. A blue blood of Italy. I was born to marry well. And now the marriage date is set.
I am to marry into House Savona. The family that would have been the royals had Italy not abolished the monarchy in 1946. But to the aristocrats of my home, the abolition means nothing at all.
The Savonas still hold power where it counts most.
In our tight-knit world of money, status and masked balls, they are everything and more.
And I am soon to become one of them.
I am soon to become Prince Zeno Savona’s wife…
… or at least I was, until I met Achille.
And everything changed.

*****Patty’s Review*****

{ARC Generously Provided by Author}

Something had happened in the universe the day we had met. There was a cosmic shift, some destined alteration to the very fabric of who we were. The sun and the moon had aligned and cast us into one another’s hearts, never to be torn apart.

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It’s no secret that Tillie Cole is one of my favorite authors. When she announced that she was writing something different from all of her other books, well let’s just say I had a very hard time being patient!! She has yet again written a novel that I could rate no less than five stars. I mean this story had so much going for it. An endearing Heroine, a beautiful and damaged Hero, the gorgeous backdrop of Umbria, Italy, and most of all a “sweep you off your feet” tale of soul mates and forbidden love!! This book definitely appealed to the fairy tale and sappy romance lover that I am to my core.

I found the first 30% of the book to be a little slow but once I got passed that point, something finally clicked and I found myself feeling deeply connected to this story. Caresa Acardi, the Duchessa Di Parma is a young woman born into Italian royalty. Her life is about to change in a big way. She is to marry Prince Zeno Savona whose father has recently passed away and who was Caresa’s father’s best friend and business partner. The families are heavily involved with Savona wines. The business has been plummeting since King Santo’s death. People are not convinced that Prince Zeno can run the winery successfully. He has spent years being the ultimate playboy and never showing any interest in the family business. When Caresa arrives in Italy, she is taken to the palace in Umbria and briefly meets her fiancé. He leaves her that night due to business engagements in Florence. There isn’t a spark between them during their first encounter. I was thinking that somehow that would all change but we soon learn that Prince Zeno is not the true Hero in this story. The next day Caresa decides to take a walk around the grounds and comes across a barn that has two of the most beautiful horses she has ever seen and a vineyard that has the sweetest smelling grapes. She soon meets the man who takes care of that vineyard and he is nothing short of strikingly beautiful. Caresa feels an instant connection to him.

Achille Marchesi has lived his entire life on the Bella Collina vineyard. He and his father mostly kept to themselves and since his father’s passing, Achille has managed to lead a very solitary life. We learn early on that Achille has struggled through most of his life and his father kept him secluded on the farm in a misguided attempt to protect him from society. Right away something about him pulls on Caresa’s heartstrings and she has the same effect on Achille. We get this beautiful tale of human split-aparts which explains how we all have that soul mate that is our true other half that we are separated from at birth and only a very rare few of us are ever reunited with that person who makes us complete.

I couldn’t help but think of Romeo and Juliet while reading this story. I wondered how these two lovers who were destined to be together could ever have their HEA when they had so much going against them. I found myself being completely swept away by the beautiful romance that is at the heart of this story. I’ve purposely left quite a bit out of this review so as not to spoil it for any of you who haven’t read this yet. I hope that you’ll enjoy it just as much as I have.

A VEIL OF VINES is available now! Be sure to one-click!!

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