You may remember that last year I attended local event ‘Tea at Tuckton Library’ where Rosanna Ley was the guest. It was an amazing experience! Rosanna spoke briefly about The Little Theatre by the Sea which drew me in … and having now read it, the story exceeded all my expectations 🙂
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 2275 KB
Print Length: 464 pages
Publisher: Quercus (9 Mar. 2017)
Faye has just completed her degree in interior design when she finds herself jobless and boyfriend-less. While debating what to do next she receives a surprise phone call from her old college friend Charlotte who now lives in Sardinia and is married to Italian hotelier, Fabio.
When Charlotte suggests that Faye relocate for a month to house-sit, Faye wonders if a summer break in sunny Sardinia might be the perfect way to recharge her batteries and think about her future.
But then Charlotte tells Faye that there’s something more behind the sudden invitation: her friends Marisa and Alessandro are looking for a designer to renovate a crumbling old theatre they own in the scenic village of Deriu.
The idea certainly sounds appealing to Faye, but little does she know what she’s letting herself in for if she accepts this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity . . .
Before I say anything else I have to share with you that I loved everything about this novel. The Little Theatre by the Sea is a story that has a lot of depth and more than one storyline which I found totally engaging.
Faye in Deriu who is not only working with the Rinaldis for the restoration of the theatre but also trying to work out the intrigue that’s very apparent within the community (not to mention trying to block the attraction she’s feeling towards Alessandro) while her parents back home in Dorset have their own emotional journey to make. I was just as much involved with Ade and Molly as the main storyline. That’s not all. A missing young woman and a childhood sweetheart all bring conflict to the story.
Rosanna Ley had me emotionally involved with this Sardinian community from beginning to end. Their lifestyle, the history and where their future might lead all became important to me. The restoration was fascinating too. I loved the way this made me think about a building – its true purpose and how to achieve it. A living and breathing entity. I wanted to be an interior designer too! and felt envious of Faye going on to study theatre restoration. ‘Il Piccolo Teatro’ is steeped in history and has a firm place in the communities memories and lives. No wonder it is an emotive subject for the people who live there. The way this storyline unwound was perfectly paced (as were all the plots) and just when I had thought I had it sussed there was one more twist. This author certainly pulled a veil across one character that I hadn’t seen through! Such a shock! Did it change the way I thought about them? In all honesty not really. My sadness and empathy just went that little bit deeper.
I didn’t have a favourite character. I enjoyed the heat of Enrico Volti’s anger, the arrogance of Alessandro Rinaldi, the independence of Faye and the richness of finding something new from something old.
I have a couple of favourite scenes. One for its fear and the tension it brought, one for the perfection and made the world brighter.
The Little Theatre by the Sea is a story of mystery and intrigue, of people growing apart and coming together, life and death, love and hate. It’s a story that has lodged in my heart.
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