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Reviewed by Courtnee Turner Hoyle for Readers' Favorite
The Difference is a romance about finding your future by investigating your past. C. D’Angelo has structured a genetic scavenger hunt throughout the book, leaving readers clues before the mystery is solved. Rachel is a New York psychiatrist who is stuck in a slump, and she still grieves for her grandfather, even though he lived a good, long life and has been deceased for some time. Her boyfriend, Brian, and her best friend, Maggie, try to get her out of the house, but Rachel is mostly reclusive, preferring quiet evenings with a book over dinner dates and city life. After following an online ad, Rachel immerses herself in finding out more about her ancestry. Her quest is far from easy, as she has little with which to work, and some of her family members are unhelpful - or downright hostile - when she asks for information specific to her grandfather’s arrival in America.
The Difference is a novel that borders on several genres, like contemporary romance and mystery. The love language of the Italians and food are peppered throughout the book, and the author explained some Italian cultural traditions. I enjoyed C. D’Angelo’s vivid imagery, as Rachel’s childhood memories with her grandfather were described in a way that evoked the five senses. The trip to Italy was well-detailed, and I could see myself in the home country of Rachel’s ancestors as she described the land. I recommend the book to young adults and experienced readers who are intrigued by genetic and/or historical mysteries.