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Saving Mona Lisa

3.65  ·  Rating Details ·  51 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
Saving Mona Lisa is the story of Leonardo da Vinci and two of his apprentices clashing over the ultimate fate of a painting that had achieved great renown soon after everyone thought it was finished...everyone, that is, except Leonardo.
Paperback, 245 pages
Published February 17th 2011 by Americas Group (first published June 2010)
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This is NOT a story about the theft of the Mona Losa with action in Argentina and Paris as stated by another reviewer. This story takes place in the early 16th century in the last years of Leonardo da Vinci's life, and is narrated by one of his students, Francesco Melzi, who created this portrait of Leonardo:

In this novel Melzi provides some insight into the mind and work of the polymath, Leonardo. Melzi also tries to figure out the famously enigmatic exp
Nancy Brumback
Mar 18, 2014 Nancy Brumback rated it really liked it
A very engaging read in the 1st person voice of a young Italian nobleman who is a student of the great maestro, Leonardo da Vinci in his latter years, as he works on consolidating his legacy, including the fabulous Mona Lisa. Also a kind of coming-of-age story about the aforementioned young count, who finds a way to set aside his negative emotional reactions to the untoward doings of one of his associates and to relate to him more productively. (I actually saw this great painting in person when ...more
This historical fiction novel about the workshop of Leonardo da Vinci was an enjoyable, fairly quick read. I found interesting the novel's perspective (told from the POV of one of Leonardo's apprentices), and the various events from Leonardo's career that were referred to in the story. It definitely makes me want to learn more about Leonardo da Vinci!

I liked the descriptions of artistic methods. (I am not an artist, and I thought these passages struck a good balance of letting the reader underst
Julia Rist
Mar 14, 2014 Julia Rist rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful book; it really takes you back to the Renaissance. I particularly enjoyed the technical bits about how paintings came to be, from a sketch to finished work of art. I also appreciated the links to the paintings and illustrations; it completes the experience.

I am not sure how I feel about the snippets of Italian here and there, all those "grazie" and "capito". It could be argued that it adds to the atmosphere, but sometimes it gets to be too much. At the same time, one of the characters
MaryJane Rings
Jun 19, 2014 MaryJane Rings rated it liked it
enjoyed the book as a piece of historical fiction . before I read this I was not familiar with the artists life other than general knowledge from history texts. Found out about his personality and in addition to his paintings his ability to invent mechanical machines which were the basis for other inventors who improved on his work as technology advanced. Also the rivalries among his students and their ability to copy his work, Also some of the history and the strong influence of the catholic ch ...more
Sep 28, 2016 AJ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Intriguing Book

Really enjoyed the book. Especially the way there were links to portraits and photos at the back of the book and then you could jump back to where you were reading. The story in the book is based on historical facts with some fiction thrown in. Would recommend.
Irene Sauman
Mar 19, 2014 Irene Sauman rated it really liked it
This is a fictional account of how copies of the Mona Lisa may have come into being during Leonardo da Vinci's lifetime. The author has done considerable research on the subject and has created a convincing and enjoyable tale.
Nancy Berthiaume
Jun 15, 2011 Nancy Berthiaume rated it really liked it
I gave this book a four star . Story is based on the theft of the Mona Lisa painting. It is a historical mystery set in Argentina and Paris Keeps you turning the page to see what will happen next. Great read You won't want to put the book down,till you finished.
Aug 23, 2014 Wil rated it liked it
Interesting account of Leonardo's mature years, but scarcely captivating.
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Michael Harrington
Feb 18, 2011 Michael Harrington rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
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Michael Harrington has a wide-ranging background in the social sciences and the arts. He has earned advanced degrees in economics, finance and political science and has worked in the securities and venture capital industries as an investment portfolio manager and financial analyst. In more recent years he has taught political science as a lecturer at the University of California and worked as a re ...more
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“The more you gaze into her eyes, the more you will see what you want, what is actually inside your heart. And then she will suddenly vanish and you will wonder how you lost her. So you must close the door on your emotions. Eros is not a painter and he often spoils our work.” 0 likes
“Also, remember, temptations of the heart are the most dangerous but, if we want to truly live, it’s a danger we must embrace.” 0 likes
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