Adriana Trigiani, author of the New York Times bestseller, The Shoemaker's Wife, finally finishes her Valentine trilogy with a novel that will break your heart, The Supreme Macaroni Company. Trigiani introduced readers to Valentine Roncalli and her boisterous Italian American family in 2009's Very Valentine, and followed it up quickly with Brava, Valentine. It's not easy to say goodbye to Valentine and her Greenwich Village life as a talented shoe designer.
The roof of Valentine's home above the Angelini Shoe Company has been the scene of so many important events in her life. Now, it's the place where she accepts a proposal of marriage. And, as has become typical in these novels, the story quickly moves to a loud family party, in this case a Christmas Eve celebration where Valentine announces her engagement. As the last daughter to marry, the wedding is naturally a blow-out. But, at thirty-five Valentine is set in her ways, determined to continue her life and business as she always had. "I'd assumed that I would continue to live my life as I always had, wedding ring or not." What she doesn't realize is that she's poured all of her life into her business. Her new husband "Was fighting to show me how to live."
The Supreme Macaroni Company is a must-read for everyone who fell in love with Valentine Roncalli and her eccentric, overbearing family. It's the culmination of a strong series with wonderful, living characters. At the same time, I found myself very angry with Valentine. I understand her behavior in the book, because it's her nature. She fought and built the Angelini Shoe Company to what it is today. But, she comes across as a demanding, selfish woman who only wants her way, and doesn't want to compromise at all in her marriage. Honestly? The shoe company comes before everything else in Valentine's heart. She's just lucky she found a man who put her before his own happiness.
Saying all that, Adriana Trigiani wraps up the series about a strong woman who had to fight her way to success, a woman who knew what she wanted in life. Valentine Roncalli is an artist, determined to have everything, a successful business, a husband, and a family, and do it on her terms. Sometimes, though, life has a way of surprising even the strongest woman, but Valentine, with the help of her family, finds a way to move on. The Supreme Macaroni Company is this year's gift from an author who understands that life isn't always happy endings.
Adriana Trigiani's website is www.adrianatrigiani.com. She can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AdrianaTrigiani, and on Twitter at @adrianatrigiani.
The Supreme Macaroni Company by Adriana Trigiani. HarperCollins. 2013. ISBN 9780062136589 (hardcover), 352p.
FTC Full Disclosure - I received a copy of the book in order to participate in the blog tour.