Book Review: When in Rome by Sarah Adams

“Some people turn to family for questions like that, some turn to friends, and some turn to Magic 8 Balls. But I turn to the one person who never lets me down: Audrey Hepburn.”

Sarah Adams, When in Rome

Title: When in Rome
Series: When in Rome (Book 1)
Author: Sarah Adams
Genres: Romance, Contemporary Fiction
Pages: 320 (Paperback)
Published: September 20th, 2022

My Rating: ★★★½
Read: 6/29/2023 – 7/1/2023


It’s summer! There’s something about the warmer weather that draws me into romcoms though it’s not my go-to genre. When in Rome has been catching my eye for a couple of months now. Admittedly, I was very disappointed the book wasn’t actually set in Rome, Italy, but it grew on me.

Hardcore Audrey Hepburn fan Amelia ‘Rae’ Rose needs a break from her life in the limelight. Taking a lesson from Princess Ann in Roman Holiday, she sneaks away for a trip to Rome… Sort of. The next best (and drivable) destination is Rome, Kentucky. During this trip she meets Noah, a small-town baker running his grandmother’s pie shop.

Being a fan of Audrey Hepburn myself, I quite enjoyed the references to her and her films. Of course, Roman Holiday is the focus (it’s nice to see this one get a little more credit!). Personally, I would not call this a modern take on the film. Loosely inspired at best. And while yes, I did enjoy the Audrey Hepburn discussions at first, they wore thin by the end. In the age of fandom culture, I didn’t buy Amelia’s fangirling as being any sort of wow factor to anyone. Then again, this is coming from someone who’s been unapologetically a geeky classics fan her entire life.

The book was cute, but definitely not a writing style I seek out. I have another one of Sarah Adam’s books so I still plan on reading more despite it not being my preference. I was looking for a lighthearted and fluffy read and this fit the bill. Ultimately and preferences aside, this was what I was looking to read.

Likes & Dislikes:

What I liked:

  • Despite the references getting on my nerves a bit after a while, I did love the references to Audrey Hepburn.
  • Overall it was cute.

What I didn’t like:

  • The writing style. I ‘reeeeeally’ don’t like when words are written with exaggerated spelling in books. It’s ‘soooooo’ distracting.
  • I liked the side characters more than the main characters.


Even though the book isn’t going to be making it to my favorite reads list, I did enjoy it for what it was. It was a good way to kick off my summer reading.

Where to buy the book:

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