Mini Reviews: Summer Throwback Lily’s Just Fine, One Italian Summer

Today in Mini Reviews I’m featuring summery books. It’s around this time of year I start to crave a warm sunny day, so this seemed an appropriate theme.

mini review

One Italian Summer by Keris Stainton

Milly and her family are heading back to Italy for the first time since their dad died. Italy was a special place to them all, and it is filled with nostalgia and memories of the last time they were there and all together. This book is filled with raw grief, everything in Italy reminds Milly and her family about their dad, and they are all grieving in their own ways. Their relationships with their dad were all different, and the ways they remember him are too which makes for a fascinating exploration of grief. Their mum is falling apart and they don’t feel like a family any more. It is heartbreaking to read. I loved these girls and I just wanted to cuddle them all. I adored the romances in this book. At times I was screaming for them to just get on with it because I was so invested. I also loved the setting. I’ve never been to Italy, but by the end of the book I felt like I had. Keris’s writing is so evocative and you really feel like you’re there with Milly and her family. This is a wonderful book. Read it.

Lily’s Just Fine* by Gill Stewart 

Lily is absolutely an introvert’s nightmare. She likes to plan and organise things (which I can get on board with), but she is always busy, she is very bossy, she always wants to organise other people, and she talks a lot. She exhausted me and fascinated me in equal measure. When her boyfriend ends their relationship she goes into overdrive, throwing herself into the gala committee, but they’re just not ready for Whirlwind Lily and her unusual, modern ideas. Lily wants to tackle sexism, inequality and lack of representation in her little village, and I admired her for it, even as her methods made me cringe. I got on much better with Tom, who is quieter and thinks more than he talks. I adored the small village setting, and the way this book represented mental health and chronic illness. This was a fun summer read which tackled some important issues. The romance is a lovely and adorable slow burn. And I loved how Tom and Lily were both learning to be open and more accepting of their differences and their problems. This is a great summer read and I’m looking forward to more.

Books marked * are those received from publishers in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion in any way.

Have you read either of these? Can you recommend any similar summery books?



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