The Birth Of Venus Random House Reader S Circle Deluxe Reading Group Edition

Author: Sarah Dunant
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0679645497
Size: 76.51 MB
Format: PDF
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This new deluxe eBook edition features more than eighty additional pages of exclusive, author-approved annotations throughout the text, which contain new illustrations and photographs, to enrich your reading experience. You can access the eBook annotations with a simple click or tap on your eReader via the convenient links. Access them as you read the novel or as supplemental material after finishing the entire story. There is also Random House Reader’s Circle bonus content, which is sure to inspire discussion at book clubs everywhere. Alessandra Cecchi is not quite fifteen when her father, a prosperous cloth merchant, brings a young painter back from northern Europe to decorate the chapel walls in the family’s Florence palazzo. A child of the Renaissance with a precocious mind and a talent for drawing, Alessandra is intoxicated by the artist’s abilities. But Alessandra’s parents have made plans for their daughter, and she is soon married off to a wealthy, much older man. Meanwhile, the reign of the Medicis, with their love of luxury, learning, and dazzling art, is being threatened by the hellfire preaching and increasing brutality of the fundamentalist monk Savonarola and his reactionary followers. As the city shudders with violence and change, Alessandra must find her own way—and finally explore the passions she’s kept so long at bay. “Simply amazing, so brilliantly written . . . almost intolerably exciting at times, and at others, equally poignant.”—Antonia Fraser “A broad mural bursting with color, passion, and intrigue.”—People

The Birth Of Venus

Author: Sarah Dunant
Publisher: Random House Incorporated
ISBN: 9780812968972
Size: 40.13 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Turning fifteen in Renaissance Florence, Alessandra Cecchi becomes intoxicated with the works of a young painter whom her father has brought to the city to decorate the family's Florentine palazzo, a situation that is complicated by her unwanted arranged marriage to an older man and a battle between the Medici family and the fundamentalist followers of Savonarola. Reader's Guide included. Reprint. 200,000 first printing.

Sacred Hearts

Author: Sarah Dunant
Publisher: Random House Incorporated
ISBN: 1400063825
Size: 38.72 MB
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Condemned by sixteenth-century demands for lucrative dowries in order to marry, young Serafina is ripped from an illicit love affair and confined in a Renaissance Italy convent, a situation against which she passionately rebels and reminds the convent's doctor of her own unhappy early years. 200,000 first printing.

In The Company Of The Courtesan

Author: Sarah Dunant
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 1588365506
Size: 46.48 MB
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My lady, Fiammetta Bianchini, was plucking her eyebrows and biting color into her lips when the unthinkable happened and the Holy Roman Emperor’s army blew a hole in the wall of God’s eternal city, letting in a flood of half-starved, half-crazed troops bent on pillage and punishment. Thus begins In the Company of the Courtesan, Sarah Dunant’s epic novel of life in Renaissance Italy. Escaping the sack of Rome in 1527, with their stomachs churning on the jewels they have swallowed, the courtesan Fiammetta and her dwarf companion, Bucino, head for Venice, the shimmering city born out of water to become a miracle of east-west trade: rich and rancid, pious and profitable, beautiful and squalid. With a mix of courage and cunning they infiltrate Venetian society. Together they make the perfect partnership: the sharp-tongued, sharp-witted dwarf, and his vibrant mistress, trained from birth to charm, entertain, and satisfy men who have the money to support her. Yet as their fortunes rise, this perfect partnership comes under threat, from the searing passion of a lover who wants more than his allotted nights to the attentions of an admiring Turk in search of human novelties for his sultan’s court. But Fiammetta and Bucino’s greatest challenge comes from a young crippled woman, a blind healer who insinuates herself into their lives and hearts with devastating consequences for them all. A story of desire and deception, sin and religion, loyalty and friendship, In the Company of the Courtesan paints a portrait of one of the world’s greatest cities at its most potent moment in history: It is a picture that remains vivid long after the final page. From the Hardcover edition.

Mapping The Edge

Author: Sarah Dunant
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0375506837
Size: 54.64 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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People go missing every day. They walk out of their front doors and out of their lives into the silence of cold statistics. For those left behind it is the cruelest of long good-byes. Anna, a self-sufficient and reliable single mother, packs her bags one day for a short vacation to Italy. She leaves her beloved six-year-old daughter, Lily, at home in London with good friends. But when Anna doesn't return, everyone begins to make excuses until the likelihood that she might not come back becomes chillingly clear. And the people who thought they knew Anna best realize they don't know her at all. How could she leave her daughter? Why doesn't she call? Is she enjoying a romantic tryst with a secret lover? Or has she been abducted or even killed by a disturbed stranger? Did that person you loved so much and thought you knew so well did they simply choose to go and not come back? Or did someone do the choosing for them? Dunant, a masterly British suspense writer, skillfully interweaves parallel narratives that are stretched taut with tension even as they raise difficult questions about motherhood, friendship, and accountability. In this compelling hybrid of sophisticated crime writing and modern women's fiction, Dunant challenges and unnerves us as she redefines the boundaries of the psychological thriller. Missing rubs the soul raw. In place of answers all you have is your imagination.

To Dance With Kings

Author: Rosalind Laker
Publisher: Broadway Books
ISBN: 0307352552
Size: 55.40 MB
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The lives and destinies of four generations of determined women are set against the splendor of Versailles through the reigns of France's most spectacular Bourbon kings, from Marguerite, the peasant girl who becomes part of the royal court of the Sun King, to Rose, who becomes lady-in-waiting and confidante to Marie Antoinette. Reprint. 40,000 first printing.

The Botticelli Secret

Author: Marina Fiorato
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN: 9781429928809
Size: 23.31 MB
Format: PDF
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In this exhilarating cross between The Da Vinci Code and The Birth of Venus, an irrepressible young woman in 15th-century Italy must flee for her life after stumbling upon a deadly secret when she serves as a model for Botticelli... When part-time model and full-time prostitute Luciana Vetra is asked by one of her most exalted clients to pose for a painter friend, she doesn't mind serving as the model for the central figure of Flora in Sandro Botticelli's masterpiece "Primavera." But when the artist dismisses her without payment, Luciana impulsively steals an unfinished version of the painting--only to find that somone is ready to kill her to get it back. What could possibly be so valuable about the picture? As friends and clients are slaughtered around her, Luciana turns to the one man who has never desired her beauty, novice librarian Brother Guido. Fleeing Venice together, Luciana and Guido race through the nine cities of Renaissance Italy, pursued by ruthless foes who are determined to keep them from decoding the painting's secrets. Gloriously fresh and vivid, with a deliciously irreverent heroine, The Botticelli Secret is an irresistible blend of history, wit, and suspense.

Wife 22

Author: Melanie Gideon
Publisher: Ballantine Books
ISBN: 0345527968
Size: 13.22 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
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Baring her soul in an anonymous survey for a marital happiness study, Alice catalogues her stale marriage, unsatisfying job and unfavorable prospects and begins to question virtually every aspect of her life. A first adult novel by the best-selling author of The Slippery Year. 75,000 first printing.

Leonardo S Swans

Author: Karen Essex
Publisher: Anchor
ISBN: 0385517661
Size: 66.54 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Isabelle d’Este, daughter of the Duke of Ferrara, born into privilege and the political and artistic turbulence of Renaissance Italy, is a stunning black-eyed blond and an art lover and collector. Worldly and ambitious, she has never envied her less attractive sister, the spirited but naïve Beatrice, until, by a quirk of fate, Beatrice is betrothed to the future Duke of Milan. Although he is more than twice their age, openly lives with his mistress, and is reputedly trying to eliminate the current duke by nefarious means, Ludovico Sforza is Isabella’s match in intellect and passion for all things of beauty. Only he would allow her to fulfill her destiny: to reign over one of the world’s most powerful and enlightened realms and be immortalized in oil by the genius Leonardo da Vinci. Isabella vows that she will not rest until she wins her true fate, and the two sisters compete for supremacy in the illustrious courts of Europe. A haunting novel of rivalry, love, and betrayal that transports you back to Renaissance Italy, Leonardo’s Swans will have you dashing to the works of the great master—not for clues to a mystery but to contemplate the secrets of the human heart. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Mary Queen Of France

Author: Jean Plaidy
Publisher: Broadway Books
ISBN: 0307496708
Size: 44.84 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Legendary historical novelist Jean Plaidy brings to life the story of Princess Mary Tudor, a celebrated beauty and born rebel who would defy the most powerful king in Europe—her older brother. Princess Mary Rose is the youngest sister of Henry VIII, and one of the few people whom he adores unconditionally. Known throughout Europe for her charm and good looks, Mary is the golden child of the Tudor family and is granted her every wish. Except when it comes to marriage. Henry VIII, locked in a political showdown with France, decides to offer up his pampered baby sister to secure peace between the two mighty kingdoms. Innocent, teenage Mary must become the wife of the elderly King Louis, a toothless, ailing man in his sixties. Horrified and furious, Mary has no choice but to sail for France. There she hones her political skills, bides her time, and remains secretly in love with Charles Brandon, the Duke of Suffolk. When King Louis dies, after only two years of marriage, Mary is determined not to be sold into another unhappy union. She must act quickly; if she wants to be with the man she truly loves, she must defy the laws of church and state by marrying without her brother’s permission. Together, Mary and Charles devise a scheme to outwit the most ruthless king in Europe and gain their hearts’ desire, not knowing if it will lead to marital bliss or certain death. From the Trade Paperback edition.