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In the Company of the Courtesan
In the Company of the Courtesan
Author: Sarah Dunant
"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." — Escaping the sack of Rome in 1527, with t...  more »
ISBN-13: 9781400063819
ISBN-10: 1400063817
Publication Date: 2/14/2006
Pages: 400
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.

3.8 stars, based on 120 ratings
Publisher: Random House
Book Type: Hardcover
Other Versions: Paperback, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review
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Top Member Book Reviews

  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
reviewed In the Company of the Courtesan on + 413 more book reviews
4 member(s) found this review helpful.
Story of Fiammetta, a courtesan who left Rome after it was sacked by the Spanish and Germans, and moved back to her hometown of Venice with Bucino, a dwarf serving as her companion and assistant. At the ripe old age of 21, having been a whore for six years and now in her prime, Fiammetta seeks to rebuild her house and her power base in 1520’s Venice. Once again, the author uses her verbal paintbrush to unveil a unique portrait of the city, the times, the people, the mood of the era and makes you wish you were there despite the unpleasant side of it all. I enjoyed this book quite a lot, but it didn’t quite have the magical sparkle that The Birth of Venus had.
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
reviewed In the Company of the Courtesan on + 19 more book reviews
3 member(s) found this review helpful.
If you liked The Other Boylen Girl, you will like this. The most interesting aspect of the story is that the narrator is a dwarf! A good book if you like Period Novels.
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
reviewed In the Company of the Courtesan on + 72 more book reviews
2 member(s) found this review helpful.
A good read. I loved how the book was from the dwarfs point of view. It did start to get a little long and boring towards the end though.

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  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
reviewed In the Company of the Courtesan on + 12 more book reviews
This book has many strengths. The setting is evocative and seemingly well-researched, but not particularly attractive in the mind's eye. My expectations were more along the lines of sumptuous fabrics, rich wines, and languid encounters. In actuality, the book's courtesan is down on her luck, and any interaction we have with her day to day life is narrated from the 'behind the scenes' perspective of her partner in crime.

There is an interesting subplot to follow, and unexpected twists keep the book from becoming boring, but it wasn't the escapist fiction I was expecting.