Anyone else researching family genealogy? Then you will find The Difference very relatable. It’s a beautifully crafted debut novel about the main character uncovering the mystery about her grandfather’s past.
While I was gifted an advanced reader’s copy (ARC) of this novel in exchange for a book review, opinions are always my own.
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5* for The Difference by C. D’Angelo: A beautifully crafted debut novel about family secrets and self-discovery
You can’t help but cheer for the vulnerable and anxious, yet likable and relatable, Rachel Granza.
With an obsessive fascination with the Titanic, the main character struggles with getting outside her head. Her overthinking angst threatens to sabotage her relationship with her boyfriend especially. Fortunately, she realizes that he cannot fix her. So was happy when Rachel refocused her frenetic energy toward a new obsession and a purpose – researching the secretive life of her beloved grandfather. And an adventure that leads her to Italy – with a surprising twist that makes the story come full circle.
Anyone who has ever attempted to trace their family heritage knows how frustrating and time-consuming those genealogy rabbit holes can be. Despite constant false starts and dead ends, Rachel finds a meaningful purpose as she searches for answers. I admire this flawed character’s tenacity in overcoming setbacks on this journey to discover more about her family’s past and more about herself. And I loved learning more about the Italian culture.
My one-word book review and rating for The Difference by C. D’Angelo: Tenacious | 5*. See all my 2021 one-word book reviews and ratings.
Researching Family History
On a semi-related note: Like Rachel, I, too, have a slight fascination with the Titanic. It wasn’t until I was an adult when I learned I had a familial connection with that cursed ship. I happened to mention to my grandmother that we had tickets to see the Titanic exhibit. She casually told me that my great-grandfather’s uncle and family were passengers on the Titanic. Unfortunately, they did not survive.
I’m also researching our family history on my husband’s side. His grandparents were active members of the Luxembourg Resistance during World War II. Learn more about what I’ve discovered so far about his grandfather’s story – a survivor of the Mauthausen and Ebensee concentration camps in Austria: Family history: WWII and The Holocaust
The Difference – Italy travel bucket list
Spoiler alert: While reading The Difference by C. D’Angelo, it’s quite possible your wanderlust will kick in as part of the story is set in Italy. We toured Italy about 10 years ago – and it’s one of my son’s favorite family vacations.
Here are a few images from our tour of Italy.