When workaholic Lily Turner finds evidence – in her husband Daniel’s golf shoe no less – that he has a whole other family tucked away in the rolling hills of Tuscany, she’s devastated. She and Daniel have never been able to have children of their own, and she’s not about to let him get away with a cosy double life. In fact, after the better part of two bottles of wine, Lily decides the only thing to do is to book a ticket to Italy and chase her cheating wine merchant hubby all the way to Montevedova, where she’s convinced she’ll catch him in flagrante delicto.
But swapping Manhattan’s boardrooms for the cobbled streets of Tuscany is something of a culture shock for the corporate high-flyer, who finds refuge with Violetta and Luciana, a couple of elderly sisters who have issues of their own. They used to be famous for their delectable cantucci biscuits, but their baking has gone downhill along with their health, and they’re not about to darken the door of the ‘microwave’ (local hospital) to get help – not when so many of their friends have gone in and never come out. Plus, they have important work to do: the sisters head up an elderly coven of local ladies – The Secret League of Widowed Darners – who are convinced they’re the key to putting broken hearts back together. They’re sure that hunky local man Alessandro is destined for Lily and keep trying to throw the pair together in the hopes that they’ll stick.
But, Lily finds herself sidetracked; by good food, too much wine, and a little six-year-old minx who just happens to be her husband’s love child. What will she do when Daniel finally shows his face and explains seven years of deceit?
RC Verdict: Infertility and infidelity are the pivots around which this guilty-pleasure chick lit novel revolves. You can pretty much guess how the plot will unfold, but it’s not a bad read for a rainy weekend.