By Sarah Dunant
NAMED the most effective BOOKS OF THE yr by means of KIRKUS REVIEWS
The New York Times bestselling writer of the acclaimed Italian Renaissance novels—The beginning of Venus, within the corporation of the Courtesan, and Sacred Hearts—has a very good expertise for respiring lifestyles into historical past. Now Sarah Dunant turns her discerning eye to 1 of the world’s such a lot fascinating and notorious families—the Borgias—in an engrossing paintings of literary fiction.
by means of the top of the 15th century, the wonder and creativity of Italy is matched by way of its brutality and corruption, nowhere greater than in Rome and contained in the Church. whilst Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia buys his method into the papacy as Alexander VI, he's outlined not only by means of his wealth or his passionate love for his illegitimate youngsters, yet through his blood: he's a Spanish Pope in a urban run via Italians. If the Borgias are to triumph, this charismatic, consummate baby-kisser with an enormous urge for food for all times, girls, and gear needs to use papacy and family—in specific, his eldest son, Cesare, and his daughter Lucrezia—in order to succeed.
Cesare, with a dazzlingly chilly intelligence and an excellent less warm soul, is his greatest—though more and more unstable—weapon. Later immortalized in Machiavelli’s The Prince, he presents the strength and the muscle. Lucrezia, loved by means of either males, is the best dynastic device. Twelve years previous while the unconventional opens, hers is a trip via 3 marriages, and from infantile innocence to painful adventure, from pawn to political player.
Stripping away the myths round the Borgias, Blood & Beauty is an imposing novel that breathes existence into this mind-blowing kin and celebrates the uncooked energy of historical past itself: compelling, complicated and relentless.
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“Dunant transforms the blackhearted Borgias and the conniving courtiers and cardinals of Renaissance Europe into absolutely rounded characters, brimming with existence and lust.”
—The manhattan instances booklet Review
“Like Hilary Mantel together with her Cromwell trilogy, [Sarah] Dunant has scaled new heights by means of refashioning mythic figures in response to modern literary flavor. This intellectually pleasing old saga, which deals blood and sweetness definitely, yet brains too, is unquestionably the easiest factor she has performed to date.”
—The Miami Herald
“Compelling lady avid gamers were a attribute of Dunant’s prior novels, and this new delivering isn't any exception. . . . The individuals of this close-knit relatives become dynamic characters, wrong yet sympathetic, full of worry and longing.”
—The Seattle Times
“Dazzling . . . a triumph on an epic scale . . . packed with wealthy element and page-turning drama.”
“The Machiavellian atmosphere—hedonism, lust, political intrigue—is magnetic. . . . Readers won’t wish the period of Borgia rule to end.”
—People (four stars)