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Love & Gelato reviewed

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Love & Gelato belongs on the young adult romance book recommendations list. Read our Love & Gelato review here.

Love & Gelato reviewed

Put gelato, Tuscany, Rome, and romance together, and you have the makings of a New York Times bestselling young adult book—Love & Gelato, a bittersweet teen romance novel. Author Jenna Evans Welch sat down to write this book after failing to find a good teen romance in her local bookstore. Welch has since published several books, including Spells for Lost Things, Love Olives, and Love & Luck. In this article, you will discover all there is to know about the book and its author.

What is Love & Gelato about?

Set in Italy, Love & Gelato follows the journey of Lina Emerson, who reluctantly travels to Florence after her mother’s death. Once there, she must follow the instructions her mother left in her will. Over time, Lina learns to love much more than Italian gelato, and a mixture of teen love and mystery turns this book into a hit. Author Jenna Evans Welch spent two years in Italy during her childhood making her descriptions even more vivid. As she put it herself in an interview with Publisher’s Weekly: “I had grown up in a bubble in Salt Lake City, so moving to Europe expanded my world in such huge ways.” Like main character Lina Emerson, the author zipped through the Italian landscape on a scooter, ate excessive amounts of gelato, and more than likely fell in love. All of which she documented in her journal entries. Jenna Evans Welch is active on social media with a huge Instagram following. Without providing too many spoilers, here’s the plot summary: Following Lina’s mother’s death from pancreatic cancer, her grandmother sends her to Italy to live with her father, Howard. She arrives after completing her high school year. Angry because of her father’s 16-year absence, Lina spends the next few weeks reading her mother’s journal. Sonia, a friend of Howard’s, gave her Hadley’s diary soon after her arrival. After making friends with a boy named Ren, Lina starts retracing her mom’s footsteps. Hadley studied at art college and fell in love with someone she calls X. Initially, Lina believes X refers to Howard but soon starts suspecting that X and Howard are two different men. Moreover, she becomes convinced that X is her biological father. Ren and Lina later discover that X is Matteo Rossi, Hadley’s former art professor. Confronted with the truth, he is none too pleased to find that he has a daughter. Upset by Matteo’s rejection, Lina kisses Ren, but he rejects her and leaves her reeling. Over the next few weeks, Lina avoids him. Reading more from the journal, Lina learns that Hadley had fallen in love with Howard only to discover that she was pregnant with Matteo’s child. Afraid of making a wrong choice, Lina’s mom returns to the U.S. and breaks Howard’s heart. Lina continues her Italian voyage and bravely tackles her troubled relationships with Ren, Howard, and Matteo Rossi.

Our book review for Love & Gelato

Love & Gelato was published by Simon Pulse of Simon & Schuster Books in 2017. It won the Teen’s Top Ten Award in 2018 and the Rhode Island Teen Book Award, among other prizes. Thanks to the author’s enjoyable writing style, Love & Gelato is a beautiful young adult love story. The setting is stunning, and the twists and turns in the story keep you guessing until the very end. As a rom-com, the book doesn’t possess that much depth. If you’re looking for teenage angst, you won’t find it here. Apart from the sweet story line written in the first person and seen through the eyes of the main character, you get Hadley’s journal entries. As a result, Love & Gelato combines two stories in one, delivering the perspectives of both mother and daughter. This contrast elevates the book into a gripping read. Fans were thrilled when the author wrote Love & Luck and Love & Olives to make a series. Anyone reading a Jenna Evans Welch book for the first time will likely want to run to the bookstore and get another one. No wonder she is a New York Times bestselling author. The Netflix movie of the book received mixed reviews. As is usually the case, the book is far more enjoyable. The New York Times describes the movie as being “like a midnight pasta reheated in the microwave.”

Listen to Love & Gelato on Speechify Audiobooks

While the book is available on Amazon and Goodreads, you can also dive into this beautiful love story via Speechify. The text to speech service provides a stunning audiobook rendition that is well worth checking out. Jenna Evans Welch’s young adult novel is available in 14 languages and accessible via all device types. If you’re new to audiobooks, you can access a great selection free of charge, including romantic novels like Anne Radcliffe’s A Sicilian Romance or Eric Segal’s tear-jerker Love Story. Speechify also delivers young adult editions of books. Check out When They Call You a Terrorist and Can’t Stop Won’t Stop. Interestingly, research suggests that listening to an audiobook provides just as much knowledge as reading. If you don’t have time to sit down to read, relax and listen to an audiobook on your way to work. You will get just as much pleasure and information.


Is the book Love & Gelato appropriate for younger readers?

Yes, Love & Gelato passes the parent approval test as it only has a few kissing scenes. The age rating is 12 and up, so it’s perfect for young readers.

Why is Love & Gelato a good book?

Love & Gelato is a sweet love story set in beautiful Italy, and it also delivers a mystery and lovable characters to solve them.

What genre is Love & Gelato?

Love & Gelato is a young adult coming-of-age romance novel.

Is there a movie for Love & Gelato?

Yes, there is. Netflix released the movie in 2022, starring Susanna Skaggs, Tobia De Angelis, and Owen McDonnell as the main characters. However, some fans of the New York Times bestselling novel felt that the movie was a poor reflection of an unforgettable romance novel.

Cliff Weitzman

Cliff Weitzman

Cliff Weitzman is a dyslexia advocate and the CEO and founder of Speechify, the #1 text-to-speech app in the world, totaling over 100,000 5-star reviews and ranking first place in the App Store for the News & Magazines category. In 2017, Weitzman was named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list for his work making the internet more accessible to people with learning disabilities. Cliff Weitzman has been featured in EdSurge, Inc., PC Mag, Entrepreneur, Mashable, among other leading outlets.