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Book of Love
Book of Love
Author: Sarah Bower
Sarah Bower has been commended by Philippa Gregory in The Week "for sheer enjoyment . . . a real page-turner." Set against the glittering background of the court of Ferrara in the early sixteenth century, this is the heart-breaking story of what happens to an innocent abroad in the world of the Borgias. Flattered by Lucrezia's favor, seduced by ...  more »
ISBN-13: 9781905005826
ISBN-10: 1905005822
Publication Date: 6/1/2008
Pages: 598
Rating:
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0 stars, based on 0 rating
Publisher: Snowbooks
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
Members Wishing: 0
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reviewed Book of Love on + 774 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This story follows a young Jewish conversa who becomes a trusted handmaiden of Lucrezia Borgia. There's a lot of fun stuff here, though it's not quite as trashy as the cover might seem to indicate.
However, although it's an enjoyable read, I also found it a frustrating one at times. We're talking about a time period and cast of characters dominated by political intrigue, and the POV character is not a main player in any of that. On the contrary, she's a naive young woman who spends the majority of the book blindly and stupidly in love with Cesare Borgia, and there're no spoilers involved in saying it is obvious all along that he does not love her in return. The whole affair is really fairly horrible - which is not to say it's unbelievable; sadly, it really is - but it can be frustrating, as I said, to follow the travails of a dumbass for nearly 600 pages.
It also creates an awkward situation for the author, because one gets to the end of the story and since the POV character was an ignoramus, you don't know What Was Really Going On All That Time. So the author ties things up with an extended narrative confessional by Lucrezia, which stretched my suspension of disbelief.

I do think the fact that I'm currently following the TV show The Borgias enhanced my enjoyment of the story; although it does give away some historical spoilers! I'm all into the time period right now; so I'm also planning on re-reading the truly excellent "Duchess of Milan" and I've ordered Puzo's "The Family" on an internet recommendation.
reviewed Book of Love on + 468 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I think that I downloaded this one for free on my Kindle even though I generally do not read historical fiction. I was more than pleasantly surprsied to discover how much I really enjoyed this book. I haven't had much success with free downloaded books lately, but this one was very entertaining and well written. While not historically accurate, and alot is not known about the Borgias, this gave me a captiviating glimpse of what life was like at that time in Europe. Very highly recommend.
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