Vicky's Reviews > Leonardo's Shadow: Or, My Astonishing Life as Leonardo da Vinci's Servant

Leonardo's Shadow by Christopher Peter Grey
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's review
May 26, 2011

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bookshelves: historical-fiction, setting-italy, series-none, childrens-mg, author-english, color-brown
Read from June 23 to 24, 2011

In 1490, young Giacomo is a thief running through the market of Milan. Fevered and weary, he finds his way to the top of the Milan Cathedral, only to fall from the roof. Days later he awakes in the home of the great Leonardo da Vinci. With no where else to go, and no memory of where he came from, he agrees to work as daVinci's servant.

In 1497, daVinci has been working on The Last Supper for two years, with little headway made. Without producing results, he is not being paid by the Duke, and his debts with nearby merchants are rising.

Giacomo is a witty and fun narrator, he reminded me somewhat of a sports caster in the way he narrated, giving a play-by-play of the action but stopping to add in his thoughts on the matter. I can definitely commend the author on the uniqueness of the narrator's voice.

A truthful representation of 15th Century Milan, Leonardo's Shadow weaves fact with fiction in an adventure about finding inspiration and family in places you never would have expected.
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Quotes Vicky Liked

“The Duke would not pay for the works. He says that the Castle can never be taken. That is called hubris, Giacomo, the belief that you are never wrong. Believing you are never wrong is an error that afflicts great men. I have learned that to be right you must first be wrong many times. Without making errors--and learning from them--a man cannot find the truth.”
Christopher Peter Grey, Leonardo's Shadow: Or, My Astonishing Life as Leonardo Da Vinci's Servant

“The Duke has decreed that the Castle is not cold." The gentleman's lips are almost blue from this lack of cold. "And the Duke is right and correct in this as in all things."

...some very beautiful tapestries line the walls, but many of them are also full of holes. Perhaps the Duke has decreed that there are no moths, either.”
Christopher Peter Grey, Leonardo's Shadow: Or, My Astonishing Life as Leonardo Da Vinci's Servant

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