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The Shepherdess Of Siena

Author: Linda Lafferty
Publisher: Lake Union Press
ISBN: 9781477822074
Size: 36.82 MB
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Raised by her aunt and uncle amidst the rolling hills of the Tuscan countryside, young orphan Virginia Tacci has always harbored a deep love for horses--though she knows she may never have the chance to ride. As a shepherdess in sixteenth-century Italy, Virginia's possibilities are doubly limited by her peasant class and her gender. Yet while she tends her flock, Virginia is captivated by the daring equestrian feats of the high-spirited Isabella De' Medici, who rides with the strength and courage of any man, much to the horror of her brother, the tyrannical Gran Duca Francesco De' Medici. Inspired, the young shepherdess keeps one dream close to her heart: to race in Siena's Palio. Twenty-six years after Florence captured Siena, Virginia's defiance will rally the broken spirit of the Senese people and threaten the pernicious reign of the Gran Duca. Bringing alive the rich history of one of Tuscany's most famed cities, this lush, captivating saga draws an illuminating portrait of one girl with an unbreakable spirit.

The Bloodletter S Daughter

Author: Linda Lafferty
Publisher: Lake Union Press
ISBN: 9781612184654
Size: 23.92 MB
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In 1606, the city of Prague shines as a golden mecca of art and culture carefully cultivated by Emperor Rudolf II. But the emperor hides an ugly secret: His bastard son, Don Julius, is afflicted with a madness that pushes the young prince to unspeakable depravity. Desperate to stem his son's growing number of scandals, the emperor exiles Don Julius to a remote corner of Bohemia, where the young man is placed in the care of a bloodletter named Pichler. The bloodletter's task: cure Don Julius of his madness by purging the vicious humors coursing through his veins. When Pichler brings his daughter Marketa to assist him, she becomes the object of Don Julius's frenzied - and dangerous - obsession. To him, she embodies the women pictured in the Coded Book of Wonder, a priceless manuscript from the imperial library that was his only link to sanity. As the prince descends further into the darkness of his mind, his acts become ever more desperate, as Marketa, both frightened and fascinated, can't stay away. Inspired by a real - life murder that threatened to topple the powerful Hapsburg dynasty, The Bloodletter's Daughter is a dark and richly detailed saga of passion and revenge.

Siena

Author: Jane Tylus
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022620782X
Size: 19.60 MB
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"Siena: City of Secrets" is a charming, intimate portrait of this most secretive of cities, often overlooked by travelers to Italy. Part cultural history and intellectual memoir, part travelogue and guide book, Tylus writes with a novelist s flair, taking the reader on a quest of discovery through the well- and not-so-well-travelled roads and alleys of the ancient city. Today, Siena can appear on the surface standoffish, a bit static, and very old-fashioned, especially when compared to its larger, flashier cousins Roma and Firenze. But first impressions wear away as we learn from Tylus that Siena was, over the long view, an innovator among the cities of Italy: the first to pave its streets and main plaza (1298), the first to publicly fund its university (1321), the first to employ the promissory note (1720), the first to ban automobile traffic from its city center (1965), and much else. We also hear about Siena s great artistic and architectural past, hidden behind centuries of over painting and rebuilding, and about its resident apocryphal and not-so-apocryphal Saints. And about the distinctive characters of its different neighborhoods ( contrade ), exemplified in the highly competitive horserace that takes place annually in the city and that serves as both a dividing and a uniting force for the Sienese. Throughout we are guided by the assuring voice of a seasoned scholar with a gift for spinning a good story and with an eye for the telling detail, whether we are traveling Siena s modern highways or digging through ancient Etruscan tombs; or shadowing the path walked by medieval pilgrims; or tracking the city s financial history from its beginnings as the once-great center for commerce in the sixteenth century to its near collapse in January 2013; or celebrating literary giants Dante and Calvino or giants of the arena, Siena s Series A soccer team. A useful and entertaining guide for students of Italian culture (Tylus has written discursive, reader-friendly endnotes and included a full bibliography in the back matter), the book will also appeal to the traveler and tourist (virtual or otherwise) interested in learning more about this ancient, mysterious, reclusive citydespite itself."

The Drowning Guard

Author: Linda Lafferty
Publisher: Amazon.Com Publishing
ISBN: 9781477805299
Size: 67.94 MB
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The Drowning Guard explores the riddle of Esma -- who is at once a murderer and a champion and liberator of women -- and the man who loves her in spite of her horrifying crimes.

House Of Bathory

Author: Linda Lafferty
Publisher: Amazon.Com Publishing
ISBN: 9781477808641
Size: 18.83 MB
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"In the early 1600s, Elizabeth Bâathory, the infamous Blood Countess, ruled éCachtice Castle in the hinterlands of Slovakia. During bizarre nightly rites, she tortured and killed the young women she had taken on as servants. A devil, a demon, the terror of Royal Hungary--she bathed in their blood to preserve her own youth. 400 years later, echoes of the Countess's legendary brutality reach Aspen, Colorado. Betsy Path, a psychoanalyst of uncommon intuition, has a breakthrough with sullen teenager Daisy Hart. Together, they are haunted by the past, as they struggle to understand its imprint upon the present. Betsy and her troubled but perceptive patient learn the truth: the curse of the House of Bathory lives still and has the power to do evil even now. The story, brimming with palace intrigue, memorable characters intimately realized, and a wealth of evocative detail, travels back and forth between the familiar, modern world and a seventeenth-century Eastern Europe brought startlingly to life."--Page 4 ofcover.

The Girl Who Fought Napoleon

Author: Linda Lafferty
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
ISBN: 9781503937260
Size: 53.30 MB
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In a sweeping story straight out of Russian history, Tsar Alexander I and a courageous girl named Nadezhda Durova join forces against Napoleon. It's 1803, and an adolescent Nadya is determined not to follow in her overbearing Ukrainian mother's footsteps. She's a horsewoman, not a housewife. When Tsar Paul is assassinated in St. Petersburg and a reluctant and naive Alexander is crowned emperor, Nadya runs away from home and joins the Russian cavalry in the war against Napoleon. Disguised as a boy and riding her spirited stallion, Alcides, Nadya rises in the ranks, even as her father begs the tsar to find his daughter and send her home. Both Nadya and Alexander defy expectations--she as a heroic fighter and he as a spiritual seeker--while the battles of Austerlitz, Friedland, Borodino, and Smolensk rage on. In a captivating tale that brings Durova's memoirs to life, from bloody battlefields to glittering palaces, two rebels dare to break free of their expected roles and discover themselves in the process.

The Towers Of Tuscany

Author: Carol Cram
Publisher: Lake Union Press
ISBN: 9781477827215
Size: 30.70 MB
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Sofia is trained in secret as a painter in her father's workshop during a time when women did not paint openly. She loves her work, but her restless spirit leads her to betray her extraordinary gifts to marry a man who comes to despise her for not producing a son. After Sofia's father is crushed by his own fresco during an attack motivated by a vendetta, Sofia realizes she must escape her loveless marriage. She flees to Siena, where, disguised as a boy, she paints again. When her work attracts the notice of a nobleman who discovers the woman under the dirty smock, Sofia is faced with a choice that nearly destroys her. Meticulously researched settings and compelling characters are united with a strong heroine in this rich portrait of medieval Italy.

The Echo Of Twilight

Author: Judith Kinghorn
Publisher: Canelo
ISBN: 1911591274
Size: 75.81 MB
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A captivating story of love and loss set on the eve of the First World War. In 1914, despite the threat of war in Europe, Pearl Gibson’s future is bright. She has secured a desirable position as a lady’s maid for Lady Ottoline Campbell. Her new role sees her transported from a life of drudgery to the Campbell’s vast Scottish estate. Pearl is quickly drawn into a whirlwind of intrigue, glamour and scandal, as she realises her job requires her to become her lady’s confidante as well as her maid. In the confusing world of the upper classes it is Ottoline’s cousin, Ralph, who Pearl comes to rely on, trust – and love. But when violence erupts in Europe, Pearl and Ottoline’s world is irrevocably changed. As the men in their lives are called to the front line, shocking events unfold at home that both Pearl and Ottoline vow never to reveal. They share a secret that will test their loyalty to one another to breaking point, and will bind them together forever... Praise for The Echo of Twilight ‘An enchanting, atmospheric work of historical fiction that is a rich blend of Downton Abbey and Jane Eyre. The Echo of Twilight is a wonderful novel to curl up with this winter’ Booklist ‘Kinghorn carefully weaves a story of love and self-discovery... to tell this immersive and historically sound coming-of-age tale’ Publishers Weekly Praise for Judith Kinghorn ‘A sumptuous absorbing tale of love in a time of war’ Rachel Hore ‘An enchanting story of love and war, and the years beyond’ Penny Vincenzi ‘An epic and enthralling love story set against the backdrop of the Great War’ Fanny Blake Judith Kinghorn is the author of four novels: The Echo of Twilight, The Snow Globe, The Memory of Lost Senses and The Last Summer. She was born in Northumberland, educated in the Lake District, and is a graduate in English and History of Art. She lives in Hampshire, England, with her husband and two children.

The Scribe Of Siena

Author: Melodie Winawer
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501152254
Size: 57.66 MB
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“Like Outlander with an Italian accent.” —Real Simple “A detailed historical novel, a multifaceted mystery, and a moving tale of improbable love.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review A NEW YORK POST MUST-READ BOOK Readers of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander and Tracy Chevalier’s Girl with a Pearl Earring…will be swept away by the spell of medieval Siena” (Library Journal, starred review) in this transporting love story and gripping historical mystery. Accomplished neurosurgeon Beatrice Trovato knows that her deep empathy for her patients is starting to impede her work. So when her beloved brother passes away, she welcomes the unexpected trip to the Tuscan city of Siena to resolve his estate, even as she wrestles with grief. But as she delves deeper into her brother’s affairs, she discovers intrigue she never imagined—a 700-year-old conspiracy to decimate the city. As Beatrice explores the evidence further, she uncovers the journal and paintings of the fourteenth-century artist Gabriele Accorsi. But when she finds a startling image of her own face, she is suddenly transported to the year 1347. She awakens in a Siena unfamiliar to her, one that will soon be hit by the Plague. Yet when Beatrice meets Accorsi, something unexpected happens: she falls in love—not only with Gabriele, but also with the beauty and cadence of medieval life. As the Plague and the ruthless hands behind its trajectory threaten not only her survival but also Siena’s very existence, Beatrice must decide in which century she belongs. The Scribe of Siena is the captivating story of a brilliant woman’s passionate affair with a time and a place that captures her in an impossibly romantic and dangerous trap—testing the strength of fate and the bonds of love.