Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Madonna of the Almonds” as Want to Read:
The Madonna of the Almonds
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Madonna of the Almonds

3.94  ·  Rating Details ·  1,129 Ratings  ·  97 Reviews
Young widow Simonetta tries to rebuild her family in 16th century Saronno, Lombardy. In pursuit of a means to keep her estate together, she stumbles upon a new drink made by infusing almonds into alcohol. At the same time, she encounters the talented Bernardino, the protege of Leonardo da Vinci.
Paperback, 371 pages
Published 2009 by Beautiful Books (first published January 2006)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Madonna of the Almonds, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

MravaWishes A bit slow at the beginning, but once you get into it, you just can't stop. In the last 50 pages it is almost breathlessly fast, like a perfect…moreA bit slow at the beginning, but once you get into it, you just can't stop. In the last 50 pages it is almost breathlessly fast, like a perfect historical thriller.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Kelly
Jun 27, 2009 Kelly rated it it was amazing
Two parallel stories of love, loss and growing up. Simonetta is a widow at 17, and her dead husband has left her broke, so in order to save her house she agrees to pose as Madonna for artist Bernardino Luini who is painting a religious fresco in her local church. Peasant orphan Amaria is being raised by a kind woman she calls Nonna, and when she tells Nonna of the strange wild man in the woods, Nonna goes to look for him and takes him into their home. On the verge of death, the man they call Sel ...more
Fernanda
:):)

antes de mais esta historia vale mais que as 5* para mim vale "infinito"*
uma historia que no mínimo me deixou, tipo "afinal do que se fala aqui"?

a acção torna-se rápida, a trama fluida, a historia conta a "historia".

numa Itália renascentista onde a Santa Inquisição começa a despontar, o crime que é "amar", a bravura dos que afinal não querem ser meros peões de uma idelologia de fachada, torna-se o cerne de historia.

Afinal quem tem a pureza de sentimentos corresponde, acarinha e faz valer ess
...more
Princess78
Jun 30, 2016 Princess78 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
"Da Vinči nije imao sluha za duhovnost ; njegov prezir prema religiji graničio je s jeresi. Bilo je neke ironije u činjenici da je maestro, guste sijede brade i kose, veoma podsjećao na lik Boga u kojeg nije vjerovao...", jedan je od prvih citata s kojima me ovaj roman Marine Fiorato osvojio. Događaji vrve od emocija, od tuge do strasti ali i ljutnje s kojom dvoje budućih ljubavnika započinje odnos. Simoneta iako idealizirane ljepote, žena je od krvi i mesa, puna dilema, u raskoraku između odgoj ...more
Učitaj se!
Mar 09, 2016 Učitaj se! rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished
Zanimljiva priča o ljubavi i nastanku amaretta, s autoričinim maštovitim interpretacijama pozadina nastanaka nekih poznatih umjetničkih djela (u kojima, između ostalog, na duhovit način 'otkriva' kako je nastao onaj slavni Mona Lisin smiješak). Baš mi se svidjela :)
Knjigomanijak
Aug 21, 2013 Knjigomanijak rated it really liked it


Ova mala knjižica čija je priča smještena u Lombardiju 1525. godine me oduševila. Priča je to o Simonetti, udovici , koja je zbog gubitka muža prisiljena boriti se za svoj imetak, jer joj prijeti bankrot.Odlučna je da spasi imanje , te radi sve kako bi se domogla novca, pa tako posuđuje novac od Židova, premda je to za nju veliki rizik, jer se u tadašnje vrijeme svako druženje sa Židovima smatralo grijehom,a tadašnji Židovi su bili proganjani. Da bi zaradila novac, pozira za lik djevice u crkvi
...more
Irein
Apr 12, 2014 Irein rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
След "Стъкларят от Мурано","Тайната на Ботичели" и "Дъщерята на Сиена",Марина Фиорато ме изкуши с "Мадоната на бадемите".Обичам тази Италия,обрисувана в страниците на романите й-звуци,вкусове,цветове,имена,пейзажи и изкуство се сглобяват като парченца от пъзел във въображението ми и ме приканват да чуя вълничките,които се разбиват във Венеция или да усетя горчивият вкус на бадемите в Сароно.
Историята описва живота на млада Симонета ди Сароно ,която губи съпруга си Лоренцо по време на битка.Със с
...more
Sandra Bašić
Aug 19, 2014 Sandra Bašić rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Samom činjenicom što je radnja smještena u Italiju, ova je knjiga kod mene zaradila bodove: obožavam tu zemlju i njihov jezik, za mene jedini pravi jezik ljubavi, ali ajmo mi na knjigu.

Priča o Simonetti di Saronno je još jedna priča o jakim, hrabrim ženama koje znaju ići same kroz život i boriti se sa svima koji im to onemogućavaju. Izgubivši muža u ratu, mislila je da je izgubila sve – volju za životom, sebe samu, nesposobnost pronalaženja sreće u malim stvarima. Ali sudbina joj je pokazala dru
...more
Neide Parafitas
Oct 22, 2011 Neide Parafitas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: leituras-2012, own
Encantador... é como definiria este livro!!! :)

A história inicia-se com Simonetta di Saronno, uma jovem que aos 17 anos se vê viúva de Lorenzo, que morreu em combate. Pouco tempo depois descobre que está falida e numa tentativa de salvar a casa do seu marido, recorre a Manodorata, um judeu que a aconselha a procurar uma forma de ganhar algum dinheiro.

Entretanto, Bernardino Luini, um aprendiz de Leonardo da Vinci, que se torna também num grande pintor fica deslumbrado com Simonetta e convida-a pa
...more
Sx
Dec 28, 2012 Sx rated it it was amazing
Wow. This book was pure magic from beginning to end.

Simonetta di Saronno is a young widow, losing her fortune and her husband to the war. Bernardino Luini, an apprentice to the grand Leonardo da Vinci, is a talented painter revelling in the joys of the flesh and wanting to do more besides painting hands. When he first laid eyes on Simonetta, he knew she would be his Madonna and he would possess her. What he didn't realise was how deep his love would be, how much of himself he would reveal and h
...more
Rachael McDiarmid
Aug 07, 2011 Rachael McDiarmid rated it liked it
I'm definitely going to keep my eyes out for Marina Fiorato. I enjoyed The Glassblower of Murano and now this one. It was easy to read and an interesting story. I always love historical novels set in Italy and this was no exception. After reading this I have a yearning for amaretto and would love to learn more about the paintings of Bernardino Luini.
Tonkica
Apr 07, 2014 Tonkica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Knjiga u kojoj ima sve sto bi trebalo! Preporuka svima koji ne vole pateticno; a drage su im ljubav, prijateljstvo, tragedija i sve ostale zivotne svakodnevice! Ocjena 4.5
Sílvia
Jan 03, 2016 Sílvia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Muito bom! Gostei bastante, embora não goste de amêndoa amarga! ;)
Schwpz
Jan 25, 2015 Schwpz rated it it was ok
I’m sorry to say that this book was not to my liking.

On the plus side, it’s an easy read. The language is pleasant and the characters easy to picture. The novel’s painfully predictable plot makes it an unchallenging and fast read which can easily be enjoyed in any situation where you just want an effortless distraction. I can easily picture it as a popular holiday read for those interested in romance set in a loose historical setting.

My biggest issues with this book lies in the numerous errors,
...more
Sally
Mar 31, 2013 Sally rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I read this because I enjoyed The Botticelli Secret and found this one by the same author at the library. Some of the reader reviews of the Botticelli Secret were by people who had read the author's earlier books and were disappointed. Having read this book, I can see why. The Botticelli Secret is a romp, high on intrigue and plotting and co-incidence and, although enjoyable, low on believability. If you came to that book after this it would have been a shock, I imagine.

This is much more though
...more
Ana Luisa
Foi uma história interessante, apesar de não ter cativado muito a minha atenção. Não sei porquê, mas muitas vezes dava por mim distraída por outras coisas que nada tinham a ver com a história. Talvez estivesse á espera de algo semelhante ao livro que li antes da autora, O Coração de Murano, mas realmente nada têm a ver. Apesar da minha opinião pessoal, não posso deixar de comentar a forma cuidada que a autora tem em nos apresentar a época renascentista, tal como o modo como os judeus eram cruelm ...more
Erin
Apr 07, 2013 Erin rated it really liked it
Tis no use telling you my name, for I am about to die.
Let me tell you hers instead-Simonetta di Saronno. To me it always sounded like a wonderous strain of music, or a line of poetry. It has a pleasing cadence, and the feel of the words as they march have a perfection almost equal to her countenance.

No one writes great historical fiction set in Italy like Marina Fiorato. I was instantly hooked from the very beginning of this dual narrative. I loved the relationship between both couples, but a
...more
Henrik
Mar 03, 2014 Henrik rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historic
As I'm writing this, I've just put the book back on the shelf, and my hands are slightly trembling.
Good Gods of inspiration, what a story! I started reading with no expectations, except a great interest in the italian renaissance and its art. And the book goes on to take me utterly by surprise.
The characters were so real - some of them are actually real people - and I found that I cared deeply about them, a rare experience for me.
In short, there are no words I know that does this book any justic
...more
Mario
Dec 22, 2014 Mario rated it it was amazing
Zanimljiv spoj povijesnih činjenica i mašte. Priča o osobama koje su stvarno postojale i za sobom ostavile neizbrisiv trag u obliku slika, freski ili likera i koje su živjele na mjestima koja danas obilaze milijuni turista. Čitajući roman i koristeći svemogući google upoznat ćete djela Bernardina Luinija.
Yasmin
Sep 15, 2016 Yasmin rated it liked it
3.75 *s

This was an enjoyable read, full of vivid descriptions that really brought the characters and scenes to life.
The plot lines were engaging, and the characters drawn well. I've enjoyed both books I've read by this author ( the other being The glassblower of Murano) , and find her writing style relaxing and easy to read.
I will definitely be reading more
Kate Forsyth
May 17, 2013 Kate Forsyth rated it it was amazing
I've been slowly reading my way through Marnia Fiorato's books since enjoying her debut The Glassblower of Murano a few years ago. This one is set in Renaissance Italy, and tells the story of the love affair between a painter and a young woman who invents a liquor made from almonds in order to save her beloved house. I really enjoyed this
Hristina Ivanova
Sep 18, 2013 Hristina Ivanova rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, historical
This is such a beautiful book! It was an easy read,but an interesting and intriguing one too! I was so excited to turn the next page,I just couldn't help it! Love is permament element in the book,but the way the story is told makes it even more compelling.I strongly reccomend it.
Eric
Jun 20, 2011 Eric rated it really liked it
Another good read from this author. I liked this one as well. Art, Italy, history, love, tragedy, etc.
Pöfivonat
Nov 11, 2013 Pöfivonat rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: whislists
Ahhoz képest, hogy Fiorato egyik kevésbé jól sikerült regénye, nekem borzasztóan tetszett. Ha a többi is ilyen, akkor mind KELL. ;)
Kristina
May 14, 2015 Kristina rated it liked it
3.5
Maria
A Virgem das Amêndoas retrata, sobretudo, a vida da jovem Simonetta di Saronno desde que ficou viúva de Lorenzo, que morreu em combate. Com a morte do seu marido, Simonetta descobre que está completamente falida visto que Lorenzo havia gasto praticamente todo o dinheiro de ambos para equipar os cavalos e soldados para a guerra. Sozinha, vê-se impotente para pagar todos os gastos inerentes a uma casa enorme, com imensa criadagem e começa a acumular dívidas a criados e comerciantes.
Depois de ter
...more
Carla Soares
May 21, 2012 Carla Soares rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Começo por uma nota à capa, que acho lindíssima.

Este é o segundo livro da autora que leio, tendo lido primeiro O Coração de Murano. Nessa altura, este seu livro anterior despertou-me curiosidade, e agora descobri que estava certa.

Trata-se de uma fantasia em torno de uma lenda - a do licor de Amaretto - e de figuras reais, como o pintor Bernardino Luini, renascentista e discípulo de Da Vinci, sobre cuja vida, segundo a autora, pouco se sabe. Isso permitiu-lhe algumas liberdades criativas, que ass
...more
Sandra
Simonetta era apenas uma menina quando desposou com Dom Lorenzo di Saronno, outro rapaz cuja visão do mundo ainda é muito restrita.

Quando numa batalha Dom Lorenzo é morto, o véu de engano que cobria os olhos da senhora di Saronno é levantado e ela, que sempre foi acostumada a luxos e grandezas, vê-se na mais pura miséria, com a única solução de ter de batalhar e trabalhar para comer.

A transformação que esta personagem sofreu por causa deste acontecimento trágico fez-me gostar muito mais do que e
...more
Célia
A Virgem das Amêndoas é um romance histórico, cuja acção decorre na Itália do século XVI, no auge da criação artística renascentista.
Uma das personagens principais deste livro é Bernardino Luini, um pintor do círculo de Leonardo da Vinci que por volta de 1525, ano em que esta história se inicia, se desloca a Saronno (Lombardia) para pintar um fresco na Igreja de Santa Maria dei Miracoli. Lá encontra Simonetta, uma bela e jovem viúva, que se encontra em apuros financeiros e que, como tal, aceita
...more
Alexandra
Gosto muito de romances históricos, principalmente quando os mesmos se desenrolam em cenários pelos quais tenho um especial fraquinho, como é o caso deste livro, passado na Itália Renascentista. Melhor ainda quando vai buscar personagens que existiram mesmo, como é o caso de Bernardino Luini e Simonetta di Saronno. Bem sei que a realidade não é igual à ficção e que a história destes dois foi romanceada para encher as páginas deste livro, mas ainda assim, a sensação é a de que estou a ficar a con ...more
Margaret
Sep 12, 2013 Margaret rated it it was amazing
Marina Fiorato is becoming one of my favourite Historical Fiction authors, for she is just superb in capturing the magical aura of Italy, its luscious sceneries, traditions, while presenting memorable characters, real and fictional.
Bernardino Luini, who learned his art with Leonardo da Vinci, arrives in Saronno to paint the walls of the local church and is fascinated by the beauty of the young widow, Simonetta. He wants her to be the model for the Virgin Mary but she refuses at first. Neverthele
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 15, 2015 09:27AM  
  • The Four Seasons: A Novel of Vivaldi's Venice
  • The Miracles of Prato
  • The Venetian Mask
  • The Ruby Ring
  • Poison in the Blood: The Memoirs of Lucrezia Borgia
  • The Borgia Mistress (The Poisoner Mysteries, #3)
  • Signora Da Vinci
  • The Scarlet Contessa
  • The Courtesan's Lover
  • Vivaldi's Virgins
  • The Creation of Eve
  • The Master of Verona (Star-Cross'd #1)
  • The Second Duchess
  • The Secret of the Glass
  • Bonkers
  • Leonardo's Swans
  • Madame Serpent (Catherine de Medici, #1)
  • The Lion and the Rose (The Borgias, #2)
772663
Marina Fiorato is half-Venetian. She was born in Manchester and raised in the Yorkshire Dales.

She is a history graduate of Oxford University and the University of Venice, where she specialized in the study of Shakespeare’s plays as an historical source.

After University she studied art and since worked as an illustrator, actress and film reviewer.

She also designed tour visuals for rock bands includ
...more
More about Marina Fiorato...

Share This Book



“- Jesmo li uludo protratili zadnje dvije godine? Zar nismo već tada mogli ukrstiti naše puteve?
- Ne mislim da smo ih protratili. Naši su se putevi ukrstili onoga dana kad smo se sreli. Samo smo još neko vrijeme morali putovati sami. Tada te nisam mogla prihvatiti. Previše se toga moralo učiniti - za previše toga iskupiti.”
5 likes
More quotes…