Witty and fabulous Renaissance romance... and surprisingly sexy,
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This review is from: Orlando Furioso (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Written in 1532, Orlando Furioso is a wonderful Italian Renaissance chivalric romance, taking inspiration from the Arthurian cycle as well as classical Greek and Roman epic and romance (Homer, Vergil, Apuleius etc.), but which is uniquely itself. Set vaguely during the time of Charlemagne and the Saracen invasion of France, it really inhabits a mythic world full of errant knights, distressed damsels, wicked enchanters, marauding monsters and not a few female knights who are quite capable of being the rescuers rather than the rescued.
Itself an inspiration for Spenser's The Faerie Queene (Penguin Classics), this is crucially central to European literature, spanning a variety of genres.
Some reviewers have hated the prose translation, but personally I prefer it to the Penguin verse translation which feels quite contrived to me. Rich, witty, exciting, moving and absolutely never dull, this is a wonderful and very accessible read.