Book Review: If You Could Go Anywhere by Paige Toon

If You Could Go Anywhere by Paige Toon
Release Date:16th May 2019
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 432
Buy: Paperback | eBook


Angie has always wanted to travel. But at twenty-seven, she has barely stepped outside the small mining town where she was born. Instead, she discovers the world through stories told to her by passing travellers, dreaming that one day she'll see it all for herself.

When her grandmother passes away, leaving Angie with no remaining family, she is ready to start her own adventures. Then she finds a letter revealing the address of the father she never knew, and realises instantly where her journey must begin: Italy.
As Angie sets out to find the truth – about her family, her past and who she really is – will mysterious and reckless Italian Alessandro help guide the way?

After spending her majority of her adult life in the mining town of Coober Pedy, Austrlia, looking after her grandmother after she developed dementia, Angie has always dreamt of going travelling but doesn’t expect her dreams to ever become a reality.
However, when her beloved grandmother passes away Angie decides that she is ready to see the world, particularly when she discovers a letter revealing the true identity of her father who happens to live in none other than the beautiful city of Rome.
Reluctant to leave her home and the people she grew up with behind, but desperate for adventure and to discover more about her new family – Angie sets off to Italy.
As well as seeing the sights and experiencing Italian life, Angie meets a whole new side of her family that she never knew she had. Despite being nervous about becoming acquainted with her father, Giulio, she soon finds herself fitting in and even helping out at Serafinas, the restaurant that her father owns and the place where he first met Angie’s mother all those years ago. Angie finds herself being guided around Italy by Giulio’s step-son Alessandro. Handsome yet unreadable, Angie knows there is something about Alessandro that draws her to him, yet she can’t quite put her finger on how she feels about him. There is certainly more than meets the eye where this fiery Italian is concerned, and as the two get closer it becomes apparent that Alessandro is more troubled than would first appear. But what is he hiding and why is he so reluctant to get close to both his family and to Angie?

A new Paige Toon novel is a cause for MAJOR excitement. I am a proper Toonaholic, I absolutely love her books and they always cause me the well known dilemma of desperately wanting to read and devour every single word in record time, yet also wanting to stretch the reading experience out as long as possible in order to saviour every sentence. 
One of the things that I love most about Paige's writing is how she has that enviable talent of transporting you to the places that she writes about. I found this to be very much the case with If You Could Go Anywhere. Angie's home of Coober Pedy absolutely fascinated me. I loved how she lived in a dugout and I enjoyed hearing snippets from her life back home when she visited Italy and talked about the heat, the sparseness, the dust storms, the opal mining and all of the other aspects of her home town.
But I also ADORED hearing about Italy and all of the wonderful places Angie was visiting for the first time. I have always wanted to visit Italy and Paige really bought the location to life for me. I could feel the heat, I could experience the bustle of Italian life and I could smell the delicious food in Serafinas. It was glorious and it's made me want to visit Italy even more. I really felt as though I was experiencing the adventure along with Angie and that was one of the many reasons as to why I found myself flying through this book in the way that I did.
Talking of Angie she was an absolutely wonderful character and the type that you can't help but take an instant liking to. She was caring, kind-hearted and extremely generous. I found myself drawn to her immediately and I was really looking forward to joining her on her Italian adventure.
The character of Alessandro fascinated me. At first I wasn't sure about him, I couldn't understand why he would be the way he was with Angie one minute and then distance himself the next (but don't get me wrong, he did sound extremely gorgeous in that moody-yet-sexy kind of way) I was keen to find out more about him and I was sad for him when I discovered the true extent of the pain he had been carrying around for all of those years.
There were also a great selection of supporting characters in the novel. Stefano was my favourite but I loved them all each in their own way ( I especially liked Jimmy back home...The relationship he shared with Angie made me tear up...) I would love to read more about these characters and I really hope that Paige decides to revisit them in the future because I felt as though I really connected with them and it's so satisfying when a book makes me feel this way.

I loved how this novel managed to combine being a wonderful coming of age story with being a heartfelt romance at the same time. It also really drew on the importance of family and celebrating the relationships that we have. It is a heart-felt, superbly written novel and definitely one of my new favourites from Paige (I feel as though I say this about every new novel she writes but I can't help but love each book and her writing more and more...)

If you like your books to have food, gorgeous locations and a well written plot then this is the book for you. You will devour it faster than one of Giulio's tasty-sounding pizzas...


A huge thank you to Simon & Schuster for the review copy of If You Could Go Anywhere


  1. Excellent review. I just might like this book.

  2. This sounds divine - I wants it!

  3. I'm glad you enjoyed it. This author seems to be quite popular.
    Gemma @ Gemma's Book Nook

  4. I've never actually read a Paige Toon book, they all do look great though. Lovely review.