The Patron Saint of Second Chances by Christine Simon

Title:  The Patron Saint of Second Chances

Author: Christine Simon
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre:  General Fiction (Adult)
Format:  Kindle
No. of Pages: 303
Date of Publication:  12 April, 2022
My Rating:  5 Stars

My Thoughts

I was charmed by the title and the cover but I stayed for the story, finding this debut novel to be so wonderful that I absolutely fell in love with it; the characters, the descriptions. I am so very impressed with Ms. Simon’s story that I don’t know what to write that will convey how much I adored this book. 

I am looking forward to reading more of the author’s future works. 

eARC kindly provided by Atria Books and NetGalley. Opinions shared are my own.


The self-appointed mayor of a tiny Italian village is determined to save his hometown no matter the cost in this charming, hilarious, and heartwarming debut novel.

Vacuum repairman and self-appointed mayor of Prometto, Italy (population 212) Signor Speranza has a problem: unless he can come up with 70,000 euros to fix the town’s pipes, the water commission will shut off the water to the village and all its residents will be forced to disperse. So in a bid to boost tourism—and revenue—he spreads a harmless rumor that movie star Dante Rinaldi will be filming his next project nearby.

Unfortunately, the plan works a little too well, and soon everyone in town wants to be a part of the fictional film—the village butcher will throw in some money if Speranza can find roles for his fifteen enormous sons, Speranza’s wistfully adrift daughter reveals an unexpected interest in stage makeup, and his hapless assistant Smilzo volunteers a screenplay that’s not so secretly based on his undying love for the film’s leading lady. To his surprise—and considerable consternation, Speranza realizes that the only way to keep up the ruse is to make the movie for real.

As the entire town becomes involved (even the village priest invests!) Signor Speranza starts to think he might be able to pull this off. But what happens when Dante Rinaldi doesn’t show up? Or worse, what if he does?

A “hilariously funny and beautifully written” (Julia Claiborne Johnson, author of 
Better Luck Next Time) novel about the power of community, The Patron Saint of Second Chances is perfect for fans of Fredrik Backman and Maria Semple.


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