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The Merchants of Light: A Novel of Venice

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really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  13 ratings  ·  4 reviews
Can human creativity triumph over human destruction?

Germany, 1945. Monuments Man John Skilton arrives in the bombed-out city of Würzburg with orders—and a personal mission—to rescue art from the ravages of war. Among the ruins, he discovers a series of magnificent frescoes that have miraculously survived the devastation. But who painted them? More importantly, how will Ski
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Published 2014 by Bene Factum Publishing
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Susan Foster
Apr 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The Merchants of Light is exactly the sort of book I love, teaching me something new ( in this case 18th century art) and being transported to places I have never visited before, namely Venice and Wurzburg.
The novel tells the story of real life Venetian painter Giambattista Tiepolo and his family, however the story begins in Germany just after the Second World War when Monuments Man John Skilton discovers that Tiepolo's most famous work, the frescoes in the Wurzburg Residence, are about to colla
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Gillian
Aug 29, 2016 rated it liked it
This was an enjoyable read about a fresco painter and his family in 18th century Venice and the 20th century monuments man who struggles to save the frescoes in war-torn 1945 Wurzburg, Germany.

I particularly liked the story set in Venice, but somehow I wanted more, which Maretich did not deliver. Most of all, I wanted to know 'why'? I couldn't really get into the psychology of the characters. Each chapter is told in the third person from the perspective of different characters. In venice, the s
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David
Jun 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those rare books where the writer's (extensive) research blends seamlessly with her imagination. The result is a compelling journey to 18th c. Venice and Wurtzburg, where the painter Tiepolo and his sons create their fabulous and enduring frescoes. I loved every aspect of this incredible book. The author's characterization of the artist, his wife, Count Francesco Algarotti (a Venetian polymath and art dealer), and even the notorious Casanova is both honest and loving. I also admir ...more
Joanne
Dec 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a brilliant novel for readers who love art, who love Venice, and who love great writing. The novel tells the story of Tiepolo, the most celebrated painter of his time, vividly depicting life in 18th century Venice. "The Merchants of Light" masterfully shows Tiepolo's creative process, as well as the life of a family of artists. Martetich has masterful insights into Tiepolo and his works. In addition, the narrative is framed by a suspenseful attempt to rescue Tiepolo's magnificent frescoe ...more
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Marta Maretich is an American writer who lives and works in London. She is the author of three novels: The Possibility of Lions (GemmaMedia 2011), The Merchants of Light (Nine Elms Books 2015) and The Bear Suit (forthcoming in 2016). Her short fiction, nonfiction and poetry have appeared in many publications including Boom! A Journal of California, The Harvard Review and The Jacaranda Review. She ...more

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