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The Scarlet Contessa: A Novel of the Italian Renaissance Hardcover – 6 Jul 2010

4.0 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 454 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press; 1 edition (6 July 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312369530
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312369538
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 4 x 24.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,380,659 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Sexually voracious, battle hardened, a ruler in her own lands, Caterina rejects a woman's place in a macho culture. Does she get away with it? That's what this guilty pleasure of a novel is about." --"USA"" Today"

"In her fascinating novels Kalogridis focuses on the intrigues, passions and history of the Renaissance, drawing readers into the events that shaped the era through the lives of remarkable women. In a time when women quietly obeyed, Caterina Sforza forged her own destiny, choosing her lovers and fighting battles. In Kalogridis' hands, she comes alive as an extraordinary woman ahead of her time."--"RT Book Review" (4 stars)

"Historical novelist Kalogridis has again woven a delightful and intricate tapestry of life, love, lust, politics and ambition that made up the Italian peninsula in the 15th century. . . . Depictions of sumptuous richness and the basest squalor, the petty enmities and jealousies, the corruption at the heart of the Vatican are shown in splendid detail and make this an incredibly rewarding read. Highly recommended."--"Library Journal"

"[A] vividly rendered historical . . . plenty of intrigue and conspiracy in the lusty plot."--"Publishers Weekly"

Sexually voracious, battle hardened, a ruler in her own lands, Caterina rejects a woman's place in a macho culture. Does she get away with it? That's what this guilty pleasure of a novel is about. "USA Today"

In her fascinating novels Kalogridis focuses on the intrigues, passions and history of the Renaissance, drawing readers into the events that shaped the era through the lives of remarkable women. In a time when women quietly obeyed, Caterina Sforza forged her own destiny, choosing her lovers and fighting battles. In Kalogridis' hands, she comes alive as an extraordinary woman ahead of her time. "RT Book Review (4 stars)"

Historical novelist Kalogridis has again woven a delightful and intricate tapestry of life, love, lust, politics and ambition that made up the Italian peninsula in the 15th century. . . . Depictions of sumptuous richness and the basest squalor, the petty enmities and jealousies, the corruption at the heart of the Vatican are shown in splendid detail and make this an incredibly rewarding read. Highly recommended. "Library Journal"

[A] vividly rendered historical . . . plenty of intrigue and conspiracy in the lusty plot. "Publishers Weekly"" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Jeanne Kalogridis lives with her partner on the West Coast, where they share a house with two dogs. She is the author of "The Borgia Bride, The Devil's Queen," and other dark fantasy and historical novels. Born in Florida, Kalogridis has a B.A. in Russian and a master's in linguistics, and taught English as a second language at The American University for eight years before retiring to write full-time. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is very well written. Just the right amount of Historical detail and description to make the reader feel they are in the period, without slowing down the story too much.I was gripped from the beginning, it wasn't slow to start as some novels can be. Great storyline, with references to many of the most important events of the period to keep History fans interested.Good to read as a sequel or prequel to The Borgia Bride, which features some of the same characters at a slightly later period.
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I thought this was a truly compelling read and a must if you have watched the TV dramatisation of The Borgias! Following the factual account of this period in history this particular angle fitted in extremely well. The characterisation was strong and believable and I have been completely transported to the mood and times of this turbulent period in history.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Covering a period of history I knew nothing at all about, this brings in the Medicis and the Borgias and some of their conflicts at the end of the 15th century in Italy
Not a writing style I particularly liked but a good tale
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The story told here is gripping and one full of pain and joy. The characters have such an intense impact on the reader due to the fact it reiterates true events and the situations encountered here still have resonance nowadays. Fantastic read
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Case of too much information in the background detracting from reading the actual story. It is a book that can be put down and read when not much reading time available and you can easily pick up the story because it is repetitive.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is published as the life of Caterina Sforza but the book is told by,and about,her fictional adopted sister,Dea,and her life spent with Caterina.
There are gaping historical errors and omissions:-There is no mention of Caterina's full brothers,Carlo & Allessandro;Cesare and not Juan is stated as the eldest Borgia brother;Caterina's last two children with Giovolamo Riavio are not mentioned,nor is her second marriage to Giacomo Feo and their son,Bernadino.
The story ends when Cesare Borgia takes Caterina prisoner and she and Dea separate.What happens to Caterina after that is covered in a 1/2 page afterword.
The fiction detracts from the facts and in my opinion the true facts would have made a far better read.
This is not a book to learn about the real life of Caterina Borgia and not for true history lovers.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Not sure how historically correct this was but a good read. Sex, intrigue, war all mixed up with tarot readings.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
At times I couldn't put the book down, I had to keep reading to see what happens next. I loved that it went into detail of the way they lived, the descriptions of the furnished rooms, the clothes they wore etc and listed the names I have read about from Italy's past such as the Borgias, the Medici n Machiavelli. An excellent and exciting read. I definitely recommend it.
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