Book Review: The Temptation of Gracie

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Name of the book: The Temptation of Gracie

Name of the Author :  Santa Montefiore

Year of publishing: 2018

The publisher: Simon & Schuster

Number of Pages: 400

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The Story:

68 Year old Gracie Burton is leading a quiet, lonely life in Devon. Shy by nature, she is a helping hand for everyone in town. Her daughter Carina, a busy PR consultant, is leading an elite life away from her. Her moody, teenage granddaughter Anastasia is not really affectionate towards her either.

One day Gracie stumbles upon a newspaper advertisement about a week-long cooking course of Mamma Bernadette, in Castello Montefosco, Italy. Immediately after, she decides to enroll for the course in Tuscany.

However, her announcement of traveling to Italy all of a sudden shocks everyone in the town including her daughter. According to them, traveling to an unknown place is not a wise decision for older people. Nevertheless, Gracie decided to go and to her surprise, both daughter and granddaughter decide to accompany her to Italy.

On the other hand, Gracie has more than a cooking class in her mind. A hidden past which was buried under her for 40 years, unknown to both her family and friends.

My views on theme, Plot & Characters

First of all, let me tell you that I am a great fan of Santa Montefiore’s books. All of her books have alluring elements. Whenever I decide to read her books more than the story the setting of the book grabs my attention. The narration is so captivating that I often find it surprising that I am still at my own house. This book which I listened through audible was undoubtedly a great choice. In my opinion, having a great narrator for your audiobook enhances the beauty of the story.

From the cover of Temptation of Gracie itself, I knew that all I have to do is grab a cup of tea and get ready to set off to the enchanting Tuscan Hills. However, I was a bit unsure whether the story would be as thrilling as Tuscany. A quick glance at the blurb gave the impression of a cliche romantic story of an old woman going to find the long lost love of her life. Well, It was a bit of jumping the gun.

The first few chapters describe Gracy’s present life. A kind-hearted woman, loved by everyone in the book club. Her snobbish friends consider her to be an old soul leading an abandoned life. For her ambitious daughter Carina, Gracie is just an ordinary woman without any ambition and never led an extraordinary life. Honestly, in the beginning, I had to agree with Carina. There wasn’t anything extraordinary about Gracie! By and by I realized the REAL Gracie.

The compelling element of the book was Gracie’s past. Instead of a shy woman, we see a new Gracie, an ambitious and immensely talented painter!

She led an extraordinary life in Tuscany with her uncle, Hans, got to live in a gigantic house and followed her passion for paintings. A completely different Gracie all together. I can’t really describe more of her life in Tuscany. Nonetheless, I must say that those were the best moments in the book for me.

In the present story which also takes place in Tuscany, I loved reading mamma Bernadatt’s cooking class. Her daughter Ellaria’s description of food was hilarious.

It was last year that I visited Tuscany. After reading this book I so wish that I could to go back to those beautiful countrysides of Tuscany.

I am pretty sure you would also like to visit those beautiful Tuscan hills. Furthermore, taking a cooking class is something this book tempts you to do. Seriously who wouldn’t love to cook the sumptuous Italian dishes!


In a nutshell, Temptation of Gracie is an emotive read. Told in a beautiful narrative along with incredible settings. It handles the theme of family and romance. If you are a lover of romance novels and countrysides, I am sure that this book won’t disappoint you.

Let me conclude the review with the best lines which describe the enchanting Tuscany.

“ Gracie closed her eyes and inhaled.

She could already smell the wild thyme and rosemary,

the honeysuckle and jasmine, the luxurious gardenia,

dewy grass and aromatic pine. She could hear

the gentle chirruping of crickets and see the velvet sky twinkling

with a thousand stars like a vast canopy of diamonds

spread out over the Tuscan hills ”.

Would you love to read about Gracie? Then pick it up this book from the library or buy now on Amazon

Time of YOUR action:

What do you think of my review? Do you think this is something for you? Have you read any of Montefiore’s novels. Let me know in the comments or send me an email

Stephy George
Stephy George

Hi I am Stephy ! I became a bookworm in my late twenties. So I created this little corner of books online to share my love of reading with YOU! I want to help you find the best books to read so you won’t ever have to worry about your next read!

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