Meet Mia: an unforgettable heroine learning the meaning of life and love on a beautiful Italian island. Perfect for fans of Mhairi McFarlane, Lindsey Kelk and Lucy Vine.
Mia’s dad has always been her idol. Now, she faces losing him and he is insisting that she leave England to visit her mother’s family on the Italian island of Ischia.
Arriving on the island, Mia is embraced by the warm, crazy relatives she hardly knows. Despite her doubts about the trip, it is in Italy that Mia discovers connections to a part of her life that’s been missing, and during the sun-soaked days and steamy nights Mia falls for handsome local Salvatore. But as the day of her departure draws nearer can she risk having her heart broken twice in one summer?
If you love Prosecco and Promises, why not read more about Mia’s best friend Savvy in Cocktails and Dreams? Out now!
A.L. Michael is hurtling towards the end of her twenties a little too quickly. She is the author of 10 novels. Her most recent collection of books, The Martini Club Series, started with Cocktails and Dreams, to be followed by Prosecco and Promises, and Martinis and Memories. She likes to write about difficult women. Well, they say to write what you know. Andi works as a Content Writer, as well as a therapeutic facilitator. She has a bunch of degrees in stuff to do with writing, and wrote her MSc dissertation on the power of creative writing in eating disorder recovery. She truly believes stories can change your life.
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‘Mia!’ I recognized Aunt Allegra immediately, which surprised me. It surprised me almost as much as being immediately clasped against her bosom, but not quite. She was the same as she’d been twenty years ago, which said something for the Italian olive-oil-and-red-wine diet that everyone harped on about. Her cheeks were round and red, sitting beneath warm brown eyes. Her skin was sun-kissed, and her hair dark and lustrous, with a bounce like I remembered my mother having. My mother had been more elfin, slender, with sharper cheekbones and plump lips. My own round face resembled my aunt’s more than it had ever looked like those pictures of my mother I’d found. And yet…
‘My God!’ She grabbed me by the neck, jolting my head up to look at her. This was a woman who had clearly broken the necks of unsuspecting chickens before they even realized what was happening. Or she smothered them to death as she cuddled them. ‘You look just like her. Mama, doesn’t she look just like Isabella?’
The tiny woman in the corner, dressed all in black, her white hair tied back severely, looked up from her paper to scan my face, considered it, then tilted her head to the side, shrugged, and went back to her paper. Apparently I had been dismissed. That woman was meant to be my grandmother? She didn’t seem to care at all. I didn’t remember her, and she knew I was staring, but still refused to meet my eyes. Well then, lovely. The unwanted English granddaughter. Of course.
I was manoeuvred towards a seat at the kitchen table.
‘You must be hungry, Mia! Your flight was hours ago. You’ll eat, won’t you? I made a plate up because I didn’t know when you would get back. Your cousin drives like a lunatic, I’m relieved you got here in one piece!’ My aunt grasped my hands as I sat, her eyes tracing my face again in that distracting way. She was seeing past me, she was seeing her sister, and I watched as her eyes glossed over. Then, just as suddenly, it was gone. She clapped her hands, off to fetch a plate from the kitchen.
Nikki nodded, falling into a seat next to me. ‘Mama, Mia doesn’t have a boyfriend.’
Her mother clicked her teeth whilst I looked at my cousin in shock. ‘Betrayer!’
‘Better to get it over with early,’ she whispered, grinning.
‘And you don’t have a husband when the man begs you once a week – which of you is the fool?’ Nikki’s mother raised an eyebrow, before placing two huge bowls of pasta in front of us.
‘I’m sorry it’s only simple, I didn’t know what you ate. It’s been so long.’
She clasped her hands in front of her, and I felt myself becoming tearful again, but reined it in. God, what was with me lately? Years of being stoic and laughing in the face of illness, and suddenly a bowl of pasta made me want to blub. It had been a long time since anyone but my dad was that happy to see me. Even if Allegra’s response was only due to the fact that I was a conduit to a dead sister.
‘I eat pretty much everything.’
That, apparently, was the right answer. Nicoletta’s brothers wandered through the house on their phones, nodding their greetings before their faces were back to the screens. Some lived at home still; the others just popped by to be fed. My uncle, Lucca, gave me a genuine smile and an awkward pat on the shoulder, with a nod, before backing out of the room.
‘Lucca doesn’t really speak English,’ Allegra said, sitting opposite me and watching me eat with a concentration I found disconcerting.
‘Dad doesn’t really speak at all,’ Nikki added with a grin at her mother, stage whispering, ‘it’s safer!’
Allegra nudged her, clicking her tongue, before she focused her gaze on me once again.
I guessed this was what people liked – being looked at like you’re something amazing, unbelievable—? Maybe that’s what love feels like? It made me feel like an animal in the zoo, or as if I’d just sprouted two heads.