Sat, Jul 1, 2023 10:08 AM

Chapter and Verse



The Marlborough Book Festival 2023 will be held from Thursday 20 July to Sunday 23 July.

This year sees 23 sessions with a range of  exciting author sessions. Hera Frei  reviews The Italian Daughter by Soraya Lane.

Best-selling writer Soraya Lane  will chat with Blenheim-based romance writer Courtney Clark Michaels about writing her fabulous romance and historical fiction novels  at the ASB Theatre Marlborough on Saturday 22 July at 4pm.

When Lily receives an unexplained email beckoning her presence at a mysterious lawyer’s office, her curiosity is naturally roused. To her astonishment she learns there that her beloved Grandmother, Estee, was raised in a home for unmarried mothers.

At the meeting Lily duly receives a once cherished Italian recipe and an aged theatre program, which are the crucial and sole links to Estee’s humble beginnings.

Lovingly instilled by her late father, and as luck would have it, Lily’s passion for winemaking leads her to the magnificent Martinelli vineyard and the undulating landscapes of Italy.

Unbeknown to Lily, this will be the first valuable step toward uncovering her family origins.  Lily settles easily into the welcoming arms of the Martinelli family and their breathtaking winery. Subsequently heir to the prized grapevines and gorgeous son, Antonio, provides handsome support and the tender encouragement Lily requires to further her search.

As they figure out the puzzle together, Lily steadily becomes captivated both by Antonio and her newly discovered home. Amidst the trailing vines and the scorching Italian sun, a forgone tale of extraordinary love and equally, overwhelming tragedy is unearthed. Sorrow and sadness it seems have shadowed Estee throughout her entire life nonetheless true love always triumphs, does it not? In what appears to be an impossible tryst, the solution is simply unbearable.

Soraya Lane will pull you into the fascinating world of a delicate 1940’s Ballerina and indulge you in absolute Italian luxury.

I read deep into the night, unable to let go of this exquisite story. Agonising over such heartbreak, I couldn’t help but be drawn to the characters and became completely invested in every heart wrenching detail.  Pack your bags and prepare to be ensconced in Italy right from the stunningly illustrated jacket. As you devour the rich Italian goodness, rest assured, you won’t want this magical love story to end

To buy tickets and to find out more about the full line up of authors and guest speakers visit

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