I’m so excited today to have my first cover reveal on the blog! I met Kristin Rae a few weeks ago at the Austin Teen Book Festival (fun!) and I’m pumped to be able to help reveal the cover for her DEBUT NOVEL, Wish You Were Italian! Woot! Woot! I can’t wait to read it. Mark your calendars for May 6, 2014!
Pippa always wanted to go to Italy, but not by herself. And not to sit in a classroom the summer before senior year learning about paintings by dead guys. Tempted by the romance of Rome and the chance to photograph ancient ruins, Pippa ditches the program and sets her own list of goals—get my picture taken at the Colosseum; get a makeover; fall in love with an Italian.
She befriends a local girl whose gorgeous cousin may be just the Italian Pippa’s looking for, but the road to amore gets detoured when she keeps running into a cute American student. And she can’t forget that her summer abroad is only temporary. As she explores the famous cities of Rome and Pompeii, Pippa must sort out her feelings before her parents figure out where she really is.
The beautiful COVER!
They say it helps to write what you know, so I gave Pippa the same love of photography that I have. When I traveled to Italy in 2009, I took pictures of even the most obscure details, knowing I’d want to set a story there one day. I’m thankful I was so thorough because once this story idea came to me in April 2011, my memory of the trip wasn’t as fresh. I was able to sift through my photos and build Pippa’s summer with them, tossing in some of my own experiences. I’m actually jealous that Pippa spent so much more time in Italy than I did. She got to take so many more pictures!
It’s a dream come true for Pippa to photograph ancient ruins and historic monuments like the Colosseum, but quite a lot of the story takes place in a coastal region called Cinque Terre (“five lands” – pronounced CHING-kway TAY-ray). The views have to be seen to be believed, the food is the best I’ve ever eaten (it’s the birthplace of pesto!), and it’s ROMANTIC! You can even walk on a path between all five villages along the coast, shopping and sampling food in each. I think about going back there EVERY DAY.
Gelato plays a big part in Pippa’s story, but I won’t give anything away! There’s really nothing quite like authentic Italian gelato. It was actually hard for me to eat ice cream once we came back home after our trip to Italy. I think it’s the texture and unique flavors that sets it apart. My favorites were mint and stracciatella, though, like Pippa does, I had to at least TASTE the pistachio! I don’t know how they get a nut to taste good as ice cream, but they do!
Praise for Wish You Were Italian
“With Italy’s brilliant landscapes, a main character you’ll love from the first line and a new dreamy book boyfriend (he’s mine!), WISH YOU WERE ITALIAN is a charming and addictive read. Devour this delicious treat like a double scoop of gelato.” —Lindsey Leavitt, author of Going Vintage and Sean Griswold’s Head.
About the Author
Kristin Rae was born and raised in Texas though her accent would suggest otherwise. She’s addicted to books, music, movies, crafty things, and chocolate. A former figure skating coach, LEGO merchandiser, and photographer, she’s now happy to create stories while pretending to ignore the carton of gelato in the freezer. Kristin lives in Houston with her husband and their two boxers.