From the Publisher
In 1997 when NASA’s space probe, Pathfinder, lands on the surface of Mars and Tony Blair becomes the UK’s youngest Labour Prime Minister, university graduates and best friends, Texie Austin and Maddy Barker, head to Sicily for a two-week vacation. Set on the most invaded island in the World, where its people cling to a culture so emotionally unique they acknowledge themselves first as Sicilians, not Italians, Two Affairs to Remember is an aperitif of sunshine, an antipasti of stunning landscape, a primo of art treasures, a secondi of island characters, a dolce of Mediterranean temperamento and finally, a digestivo of feel-good romanzo. A great read to take on holiday – especially if you are heading for the Mediterranean.
Upon the girls’ arrival at one of Taormina’s premier hotels - Hotel Vitali, reticent Sicilian archaeologist, Raffael Vitali and Texie are instantly drawn to one another. Maddy, however, finds herself intrigued by ristorante bar manager, Alfie, who claims to ‘bat for the other side’. Two Affairs contrasts Raffael and Texie’s old-fashioned, romantic courtship with Maddy and Alfie's surprising rapport: ‘Well, that’s never happened before ... I didn’t know girls could do such things.’ Texie and Maddy’s playful, fast-paced narrative mingles with a full cast of island characters and Mediterranean settings, particularly the ancient Villa, where Grace Vitali - Raffael’s English mother and Alfie’s employer - is planning her own destiny. Grace has panache. A crisp, incisive, no-nonsense approach that turns Hotel Vitali's fortunes around. Now Grace is ready to move on, and in so doing, becomes the catalyst for the futures of both Raffael and Texie, Alfie and Maddy.
However, will Raffael’s beautiful estranged wife, businesswoman Gabriella, intervene? Will financially embarrassed Venetian fashion tycoon Cesare Tivoli manipulate his Machiavellian daughter for his own objectives? Or will Meer Van Orrschott, languid, wealthy socialite, beat him to it? She has her own plans for her longtime confidante. Pull up a banquette! It’s the Ora del Cocktail Vitali.