Angelosdaughter's Reviews > The Botticelli Secret

The Botticelli Secret by Marina Fiorato
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's review
Jun 14, 2010

really liked it
Read in May, 2010

This book is advertised as being in the tradition of the 'Da Vinci Code', and it does have many of the elements of that thriller. The heroine is unusual: a 17-year-old prostitute who as an infant was sent from her home in a glass container. She also turns out to be something more than she is first presented. Teaming up with Brother Guido, a monk who is oblivious to her charms, Luciana tries to elude pursuers who are killing all of her friends in an effort to recover the first draft of the painting 'La Primavera' she has stolen from the studio of Sandro Botticelli, who hired her as a model for the figure of Spring. The painting contains clues to a conspiracy that could cost Luciana and Brother Guido their lives. Their search for clues takes them the length and breadth of Italy. Will they find the vital piece of the puzzle that will help them thwart the conspirators in time???

I read this book because I love Italy; My father was born there. Italian studies was my college minor, and I have also studied Medieval and Renaissance art history (Botticelli is my favorite Italian Renaissance artist). I try to read as much non-fiction about Italy as possible, and I love fiction that is set there. 'The Botticelli Secret' is a fairly exciting thriller. There is more gore and profanity than I would prefer. Having established that Luciana is a prostitute, I don't think Fiorato needed to keep reminding us every time Luciana opens her mouth to speak. Another small quibble: when you see a photo of the author and read the physical description of Luciana, it is obvious that Fiorato based the physical description of her heroine on herself. Such obvious vanity in a writer does not sit too well with me. I have another of her novels 'The Glass Blower of Murano' waiting to be read. I do hope she does not create all of her heroines in her own image.

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