REVIEW: NOTHING FORGOTTEN, BY JESSICA LEVINE

 

When Anna, now living in California, is contacted by the Italian lover she knew decades before, she recalls their affair and the child she gave up for adoption. As the episode returns to haunt her―threatening the life she’s built, including her marriage―the story moves back in time to her youth in Europe.

Rome, 1979. Anna, twenty-two and living abroad, is involved with a man already engaged to be married. When she meets and befriends his fiancée, she is forced to confront the moral consequences of her actions. But an unexpected pregnancy, an anonymous letter, and threatening relatives complicate the picture. A novel in which an unconventional heroine, far from home, is forced to reckon with the judgment of others.

 

My Thoughts: From her present life in Berkeley, CA, Anna Stark is swept back in time to a love affair that has never been forgotten. Her first person narrative takes us to Rome…and to an Italian village where her lover’s family lives, and as she is brought into his orbit, she finds herself conflicted, confused, and unsure of what lies ahead.

Will Sergio’s plans to marry the suitable choice, Olivia, end the love affair? Will Anna try to stop the wedding? How will her choices change everything?

As I turned the pages of Nothing Forgotten, I was caught up in the beauty of the setting and the strength of the family ties. Sergio’s family opened their arms to her, including her in meals, but one member of the Italian family would turn against her when she tried to tell her secret to Sergio. The era of 1979 reminded me of how lives were different back then, and how these same events in this day and age could have taken an entirely new path.

In the present, Anna and her husband separate, and upon her return to Italy to see her aunt’s apartment again, she makes some life-changing decisions. 4 stars.***

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