Friday, June 20, 2008

The Wedding Officer by Anthony Capella

I picked up The Wedding Officer from a table of  "summer reading" at Barnes and Noble. From the cover you would think this is a lighthearted romance set during WWII. I was also intrigued because it was written by a man. The story was actually much darker than I expected. It's 1944 and Captain James Gould is stationed in Naples Italy. He is the wedding officer, tasked with investigating young Italian women engaged to G.I.s and discouraging marriages between them. James is bitten by the love bug himself when he falls for a beautiful widow, Livia Pertini. Livia is the cook for the Allied officers and her culinary skills seduce the inexperienced soldier. 

Many tragic occurrences conspire to separate the two lovers. The reality of war is brought home in graphic detail. Capella does a great job of making you believe that Livia and James can make it even with all the brutality they've experienced. It's not all hearts and flowers but he will definitely make you believe in the enduring power of love. 

The Wedding Officerincludes a sneak peek at Anthony Capella's next book, The Various Flavors of Coffee (fall 2008). Beautiful cover, eh?

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