A Black Cat Book Review
The Girl In The Glass by Susan Meissner
When Meg was a little girl she heard stories about Florence, Italy from her grandmother. Her grandmother promised Meg they would go to Florence when she graduated from high school. But Nonnah died before graduation and Meg’s father promised his mother he would take Meg on the trip to Florence. He was never all that reliable and when he and Meg’s mother divorced he became less reliable and less available. Still Meg believed his promises and waited for the day when her dream would come true.
At twenty-nine Meg is working as an editor for a travel book publisher. In the last year she has broken her engagement to a man she realized that though she liked him she was not in love with him. She is living in a borrowed house with a borrowed cat. Her life is routine and unexciting until her father surprises her with the long-awaited trip to Italy.
One of her author/photographer clients lives in Florence. They have been talking via Skype for some time and have become friends. When she tells him her plans to be in the city they make plans to meet. In the meantime he has asked her to read a couple of chapters of a book his neighbor, Sophia, is writing. Meg agrees, likes what she has read and looks forward to meeting Sophia and Lorenzo.
Meg is supposed to meet her father in Florence but he never shows up. Though terribly disappointed she makes the best of it and enjoys time with Sophia and Lorenzo. Sophia, who is a tour guide, shows Meg the beautiful city of her dreams. Sophia is as delightful as her book; but Meg learns there are serious problems in Sophia’s life that could affect the publication of her book. One of the problems is that Sophia believes that her ancestor, Nora, speaks to her through the canvases and statues of Florence. She is including these stories in her book. This aspect of her writing will make it difficult to publish the book as a travel memoir.
The lives of these three women come together; Meg and Sophia, contemporary women of different generations, and Nora, a woman of another century. The city of Florence is what brings them together but it is love that binds them. All have loved and been disappointed. All have loved and lost. And they all find new love in one form or another. This novel is a story of fathers and daughters and love. It is about what life is and what we can choose to make of it if we are willing to risk letting go of what we know to grasp what we do not know.
I liked the book. An easy and entertaining read that does have a message.
This book was sent to me by WaterBrook Multnomah at no cost to me in exchange for this review.