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3.11 of 5 stars 3.11  ·  rating details  ·  37 ratings  ·  8 reviews
Giacomo Casanova's reputation rests largely on his obsession with women, but he was much more than the great eighteenth-century lover. Lawyer, mathematician, poet, translator, and librarian who was fluent in several languages, he was described by one contemporary as "the most civilized man in Europe." That he was also a con man, cabalist, spy, revenge-taker, and experience ...more
302 pages
Published (first published January 1st 1999)
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P.J. Sullivan
This book is worth it for the illustrations alone. It is lavishly illustrated with forty-eight full-color plates, in addition to monochromes. The author claimed this to be “the most fully illustrated biography of Casanova yet published.” It includes an extensive portrait gallery of people associated with Casanova.

The text is based on the original Brockhaus edition, the true text, which was not available until 1960. Most other biographies of Casanova have been corrupted to some extent by the Lafo
Christopher Roth
There have been lots of secondary books about Casanova, and I don't know how this ranks among them, but for me it was a fine companion to the actual memoirs, not being too long--some are insanely complex, in an attempt to identify every one of the thousands of people he interacted with (and mostly had sex with) whose names he disguised--and being full of relevant period illustrations and of witty commentary by the author, which hit just the right note. One disappointment: now I learn that in fac ...more
It wouldn't be a bad idea to sell this book with a warning label:

More Sexually Explicit Material Than Is Available At Your Local Adult Video Store

Of course, anyone who chooses to read a biography of Casanova will be anticipating this. (Although they may not have foreseen Casanova's encounter with the Good Turk and the Bad Turk.) What is more surprising is the wealth of information about cabalistic ritual, get-rich-quick schemes, and enlightenment art that John Masters has added to Casanova's pr
For as long ago as this guy lived, they sure seem to know a lot of details about his sex life. The synopsis of the book sounded like we were going to get to hear how his reputation as a lover should be downplayed because he was a good guy doing good things besides sleeping around. But the first chapter was so explicit about how and with whom that I was, ironically (and pun intended), turned off. I didn't read more. Perhaps if I'd read until after he was an adolescent, because seriously he starts ...more
Yes Casanova was a brilliant man who made terrible decisions. To me this was a boring book -Spanish/French names made it hard to follow who was who and then he would use letters for his mistresses and you really did not know who he was talking about. What was amazing was how he was such a wanted man but he never did much time for all the scheming he did. Keep in mind that if you are going to read a story about Casanova - be prepared to get very intimate with him.
Ryan Zimmerman Carstairs
Interesting read. Well worth it.
Casanova was a fascinating individual, and surprisingly honest about himself - though of course not TOTALLY honest!
Then again who among us would be totally honest about themselves?
The author sheds lights on this character by pinning down timelines and comparing it to Casanova's book. Interesting reading and it revels a life that would make today's porn stars pale.
Chuck Bradley
Bio. The man was a pig. Don't waste your time!
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Masters was the son of a lieutenant-colonel whose family had a long tradition of service in the Indian Army. He was educated at Wellington and Sandhurst. On graduating from Sandhurst in 1933, he was seconded to the Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (DCLI) for a year before applying to serve with the 4th Prince of Wales's Own Gurkha Rifles. He saw service on the North-West Frontier with the 2nd bat ...more
More about John Masters...
Bhowani Junction Nightrunners of Bengal (The Story-Tellers) The Deceivers Bugles and a Tiger: My Life in the Gurkhas (Cassell Military Paperbacks) The Road Past Mandalay: A Personal Narrative

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