All four Tuscan novels are published by Bookouture. The Tuscan Secret was previously published as Tuscan Roots and A Tuscan Memory as Now and Then in Tuscany. The Tuscan Girl is a brand new story, commissioned by Bookouture. If read as a series, here is the correct order: TTS, ATM and finally TTG. The Tuscan House, available to pre-order now, will be published on April 7th 2021.
I am very proud that three books so far have been awarded best selling status in Amazon charts.
The Tuscan Secret is the first in the series, but all three books can be read as standalone.
Inspired by my Italian mother-in-law’s experiences as a war bride, it tells the story of a daughter’s quest to find out more about her deceased mother. In finding out the truth, the daughter finds out more about herself.
Blurb and praise from reviewers:
Anna is distraught when her beloved mother, Ines, passes away. She inherits a box of papers, handwritten in Italian and yellowed with age, and a tantalising promise that the truth about what happened during the war lies within.
The diaries lead Anna to the small village of Rofelle, where she slowly starts to heal as she explores sun-kissed olive groves, and pieces together her mother’s past: happy days spent herding sheep across Tuscan meadows cruelly interrupted when World War Two erupted and the Nazis arrived; fleeing her home to join the Resistenza; and risking everything to protect an injured British soldier who captured her heart. But Anna is no closer to learning the truth: what sent Ines running from her adored homeland?
When she meets an elderly Italian gentleman living in a deserted hamlet, who flinches at her mother’s name and refuses to speak English, Anna is sure he knows more about the devastating secret that tore apart her mother’s family. But in this small Tuscan community, some wartime secrets were never meant to be uncovered…
A stunning tale, inspired by true events, about how the tragic consequences of war can echo through generations, and how love can guide us through the darkest times. Fans of Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale and The Letter by Kathryn Hughes will be captivated.Readers have fallen in love with The Tuscan Secret:
‘Wow! Why have I not read anything by this author before? The writing is magnificent… A story of love, lose, secrets and hope… I have truly fallen in love… A beautiful, touching story that I would recommend to everyone.’ Cooking the Books
‘A fabulous historical fiction story… wonderful… Angela Petch is now added to my favourite author list… The rich details of the story are captivating. A must read.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘Wow what a story… could not put it down.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘Fantastic read… I loved this book…I would highly recommend.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘Excellent book!… will grab you and hold onto you long after you put it down.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘A feast of a book… transports you to Tuscany.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘This beautifully woven story had me captivated from the start… I could not help but LOVE the descriptions of Tuscany, the countryside, the people and the food.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘I was gripped… The author weaves a magical tale… There is so much beautiful detail in the author’s writing, one could almost taste the food, or feel the beauty of the surroundings.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘The story was beautifully told… a wonderful tale of self-discovery… A great read, with characters who will stay with you long after the book is closed.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘This is a beautifully written book… an ending that took me quite by surprise.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘It had all the ingredients I love – secrets of the past, dusty documents, a house left to someone in the present day…’ The Book Trail
This book was previously published as Tuscan Roots.
A Tuscan Memory, the second in the series, was written as a result of a Sunday outing from our home village in Tuscany. I discovered stories about the transumanza, sitting on a coach with elderly friends. Now no longer carried out in our area, the transumanza was a yearly event which died out in the 1950s. For five months of the year, the men, young boys (and occasionally women) left the winter mountains for five months to travel down to the Tuscan coast with cattle and sheep.
It is a fascinating subject and a departure from my WW2 novels. A little bit niche, some say, but a novel that I am really pleased to have written. A record of some of the social history that took place in the Tuscan Apennines and which is still celebrated annually with a festa.
Read the blurb and some of the pleasing reviews the book has received.
In a tiny hamlet nestled in the Tuscan mountains, farmers gather after a hard day in the meadows, and children’s laughter rings across the square: but one little boy does not join in their play. Behind his deep brown eyes, hides a heartbreaking secret…
Ninety years later. When elderly Giselda Chiozzi discovers a lost little boy, curled up asleep in the beech forest outside her grand but empty home, she can’t help but take pity on him. It’s been a long time since she had a visitor. Waking up to her kind smile and the warming smell of Italian hot chocolate, Davide soon blurts out what drove him into the cold Tuscan night: he’s different from everyone else, he’s never belonged anywhere, and now his beloved mother is ill.
With her heart full of sadness for this lost child, Giselda promises to help Davide trace his family history – she knows better than anyone that connecting with your roots can ground you in the present, and hopes it will make Davide realise that home is where he truly belongs.
Together the unlikely pair discover the story of Davide’s great-grandfather, Giuseppe Starnucci, a young boy who spent his days milking cows, helping with the harvest, and hammering horseshoes in the forge. But after a terrible incident that changed his life forever, Giuseppe also ran away. Forced to become a man before his time, Giuseppe joined the treacherous pilgrimage all Tuscan farmers must make from the mountains to the plains, sacrificing everything to ensure the survival of their families.
Engrossed in the story, Davide is slowly starting to heal when he and Giselda discover a shocking secret which Giuseppe took to his grave – and which now threatens to tear apart Davide’s family for good. Will Davide let the pain of the past determine his future, or can he find the courage, love and loyalty within him to return home… and even if Davide himself finds peace, will it be too late for Giselda?
Inspired by true stories of rural Italian life, this absolutely stunning historical read is perfect for fans of Dinah Jeffries, Rhys Bowen, and anyone who’s ever longed to stroll beneath the cypress trees and taste the fresh mountain air of Tuscany.
Previously published as Now and Then in Tuscany.Read what everyone’s saying about A Tuscan Memory:
‘Crammed with stunning descriptions… a beautifully written and well-observed tale that will take you straight into the Tuscan countryside.’ Goodreads reviewer
‘If you embark on this journey of discovery then be sure to prepare some delicious crostini, in advance, as you will not be able to put the book down… completely absorbing… beautiful… a cleverly crafted narrative.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘The author’s love of the landscape and people of this beautiful region shine through… Angela Petch is an inspired storyteller who knows how to blend in a touch of mystery to keep the reader guessing.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘Fascinating and moving… intensely imagined and exquisitely detailed recreation of a lost way of life.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘From beginning to end I immersed myself in beautiful descriptions, well-rounded characters and a charming story… the evocation of food is mouth-watering!… I loved the way all the loose ends are tied up in the end. I recommend this book.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘I didn’t want the book to end. Such a beautiful story… I truly enjoyed the journey.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
‘Amazing book. Had a hard time putting it down once I started.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars
In The Tuscan Girl, I explore a forbidden love story. We are back again in the Second World War (with a contemporary strand running concurrently, as in The Tuscan Secret.
Of all the covers so far, this is my favourite. I think it is also the book I enjoyed writing most. Inspired by the story of an elderly gentleman in our village (who passed away in 2020 at the wonderful age of one hundred). In real life, his name was Bruno, but I changed this to Massimo for the purposes of my story. He was a POW in Nottingham for the duration of the war, working on a farm for the elderly owners who grew very fond of him. They offered him a job once the war was over, but her returned to our village of Rofelle, where I met and befriended him.
Here is the blurb and the reviews.
She ran away through the pine trees when the soldiers came. Staggering into the hiding place, she felt a fluttering in her belly, like a butterfly grazing its wings, and knew instantly she had something to fight for.
Present day: When her fiancé is tragically killed in an accident, twenty-six-year-old Alba is convinced she’s to blame. Heavy with grief and guilt, she flees to her childhood home – the tiny village of Rofelle, nestled in a remote Tuscan valley. Out hiking one day to fill the long, lonely hours, she finds a mahogany box filled with silverware, hidden near the vine-covered ruins of an isolated house left abandoned after World War II. Could finding the rightful owner ease Alba’s heartache, and somehow make amends for her own wrongs?
In search of answers, Alba meets Massimo, an elderly man who wants to spend his final years pruning his fruit trees, alone with his painful memories. His face turns pale when Alba brings up the war, but she senses that their shared grief connects them. An unlikely friendship grows as little by little Massimo speaks of Lucia: a wild young girl with sparkling eyes who fell in love with an enemy soldier, bravely stole precious Italian treasures back from Nazi occupiers, and whose selfless courage and sacrifice altered the course of the war – and Massimo’s life.
With each visit, Alba gets closer to unravelling the mystery of the silver, and they both start putting their ghosts to rest. But there’s one part of Lucia’s story that Massimo might never be able to share – and he’s running out of time. Has Alba churned up emotions that are too painful to ever confront? Or, will unearthing a wartime secret that has lain buried for generations finally bring Massimo peace?
An absolutely beautiful and heartbreaking read that will sweep you away to the rugged mountains and lush olive groves of Tuscany. Fans of The Nightingale, Rhys Bowen and Julianne MacLean will be captivated.Read what everyone’s saying about The Tuscan Girl:
‘Loved it!!!… Beautiful description of the landscape… heartbreaking… The ending of the book was perfect… Definitely recommend… Loved everything about it.’ Goodreads Reviewer
‘Mesmerizing… captivated me… Angela Petch made the story of the past and present come alive… brilliant… I was completely taken over.’ Book Reviews by Shalini, 5 stars
‘I don’t even know where to begin… beautiful… I absolutely adored this book… The picture that the author paints is both beautiful and devastating… the descriptions are so detailed, I could actually picture it in my mind.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars
‘This book did not disappoint… heartbreaking… wonderful descriptions of the beautiful Italian countryside… beautifully done… Highly recommend reading.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars
‘A beautifully written novel… Loved this book.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars
‘Heartbreaking… a touching story… Angela Petch did another fantastic job of making the characters and the settings feel real to me.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars
‘Very powerful and heartbreaking story about love and loss… riveting book that I really enjoyed.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars
‘This historical fiction novel was wonderful!… The story was so touching and I couldn’t put it down… this was one story that I could see reading again and again.’ Crossroad Reviews
‘This book was addicting. You wanted to continue reading even long after it was over.’ Goodreads Reviewer
A brand new book, set in a different part of Tuscany was published on April 7th 2021.
AVAILABLE TO ORDER FROM AMAZON, IT HAS RECEIVED SOME AMAZING REVIEWS SO FAR:
“kept me enthralled to the very end”; “a truly beautiful story”; “A total escape to Tuscany”; “Devastatingly beautiful, heart breaking and memorable historical page turner”; “fantastic characters – perfect setting”; “absolutely loved it”; “queen of the dual time novel”…
Here is the blurb:
Corbello, Italy, 1947. A woman and a little boy stagger into the ruins of an old house deep in the forest, wild roses overwhelming the crumbling terracotta walls. Since the war, nowhere has been safe. But they both freeze in shock when a voice calls out from the shadows…
For young mother Fosca Sentino, accepting refuge from reluctant war hero Richard – in Tuscany to escape his tragic past – is the only way to keep her little family safe. She once risked everything to spy on Nazi commanders and pass secret information to the resistenza. But after a heartbreaking betrayal, Fosca’s best friend Simonetta disappeared without trace. The whole community was torn apart, and now Fosca and her son are outcasts.
Wary of this handsome stranger at first, Fosca slowly starts to feel safe as she watches him play with her son in the overgrown orchard. But her fragile peace is shattered the moment a silver brooch is found in the garden, and she recognises it as Simonetta’s…
Fosca has always suspected that another member of the resistenza betrayed her. With Richard by her side, she must find out if Simonetta is still alive, and clear her own name. But how did the brooch end up at the house? And with a traitor hiding in the village, willing to do anything to keep this secret buried, has Fosca put herself and her young son in terrible danger?
An absolutely gripping and heartbreaking page-turner that explores the incredible courage of ordinary people in extraordinary times. Perfect for fans of Rhys Bowen, The Nightingale, and anyone longing to lose themselves in the mountain landscapes and olive groves of rural Tuscany.
Read what everyone’s saying about Angela Petch:
‘Fantastic read… I loved this book… will grab you and hold onto you long after you put it down… an amazing story.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘I absolutely adored this book… beautiful and devastating.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘Loved it!!!… Beautiful… heartbreaking… The ending of the book was perfect… Definitely recommend… Loved everything about it.’ Goodreads reviewer
‘Heartbreaking and compelling… A beautiful story, told with such emotion and feeling that it makes you forget where you are and what you are doing!’ Stardust Book Reviews
‘Astounding… heartbreaking… a riveting read… enthralling… a must-read.’ Giascribes
‘It’s impossible not to fall under Angela Petch’s spell… sure to bring a tear to the eye… superb… an emotional, uplifting, poignant and mesmerising tale… sure to haunt and linger in the reader’s mind and heart long after the last page is turned.’ Bookish Jottings, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘Mesmerising… captivated me… brilliant… I was completely taken over.’ Book Reviews by Shalini, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐