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Book - In the Company of the Courtesan by Sarah Dunant

I was lucky enough to be the very first person to check this NY Times Bestselling book out of my local branch of the library. I had read some good things about this book on other message boards and someone's blog, so I decided to give it a try.

This type of book (historical fiction) is not normally what I read, but it does me good to break out and try something different. A book set in 1530's Italy about a courtesan and her dwarf qualifies for different, I think!

Having said that, I did enjoy it. It was well-written and very true to the time it was set in. Although not a gripping page-turner, it was nonetheless a good read. I give it a 7 out of 10 stars.

Rather than try to write my own review, I'm once again copying one I found at Amazon.com, this one by Publisher's Weekly - it sums it up better than I ever could!

"Renaissance Italy enchants in Dunant's delicious second historical (after The Birth of Venus), as a wily dwarf Bucino Teodoldo recounts fantastic escapades with his mistress, celebrated courtesan Fiammetta Bianchini. Escaping the 1527 sacking of Rome with just the clothes on their backs (and a few swallowed jewels in their bellies), Fiammetta and Bucino seek refuge in Venice. Starved, stinking, her beauty destroyed, Fiammetta despairs—but through cunning, will, Bucino's indefatigable loyalty and the magic of a mysterious blind healer called La Draga, she eventually recovers. Aided by a former adversary, who now needs her as much as she needs him, Fiammetta finds a wealthy patron to establish her in her familiar glory. Through Bucino's sharp-eyed, sharp-tongued narration, Dunant crafts a vivid vision of Venetian life: the weave of politics and religion; the layers of class; the rituals, intrigue, superstitions and betrayals. Dunant's characters—the steely courtesan whose glimpse of true love nearly brings her to ruin; the shrewd and passionate dwarf who turns his abnormalities into triumph; and the healer whose mysterious powers and secrets leave an indelible mark on the duo—are irresistible throughout their shifting fortunes."

Added: March 15th 2006
Reviewer: Stace
Score:
Hits: 1318
Language: catala

  

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