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Books > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Historical > B006Z314RE
  1. The Scarlet Contessa: A Novel of the Italian Renaissance
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  2. The Scarlet Contessa: A Novel of the Italian Renaissance

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (39 reviews)
    Price R263.00

Additional Information

What Philippa Gregory has done for Tudor England, Jeanne Kalogridis does for Renaissance Italy. Her latest irresistible historical novel is about a countess whose passion and willfulness knew no bounds—Caterina Sforza.

Daughter of the Duke of Milan and wife of the conniving Count Girolamo Riario, Caterina Sforza was the bravest warrior Renaissance Italy ever knew. She ruled her own lands, fought her own battles, and openly took lovers whenever she pleased.

Her remarkable tale is told by her lady-in-waiting, Dea, a woman knowledgeable in reading the “triumph cards,” the predecessor of modern-day tarot cards. As Dea tries to unravel the truth about her husband’s murder, Caterina single-handedly holds off invaders who would steal her title and lands. However, Dea’s reading of the cards reveals that Caterina cannot withstand a third and final invader—none other than Cesare Borgia, son of the corrupt Pope Alexander VI, who has an old score to settle with Caterina. Trapped inside the fortress at Ravaldino as Borgia’s cannons pound the walls, Dea reviews Caterina’s scandalous past and struggles to understand their joint destiny, while Caterina valiantly tries to fight off Borgia’s unconquerable army.

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Jeanne Kalogridis
First Edition
Bargain Price
St. Martin's Griffin
St. Martin's Griffin
St. Martin's Griffin
St. Martin's Griffin
Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Historical fiction is my genre of choice, and lately I've found myself in historical England --- a lot. So it was refreshing to pick up Jeanne Kalogridis's THE SCARLET CONTESSA and be transplanted to Renaissance Italy, an Italy full of intrigue, cruel individuals and ruthless royals.

Caterina Sforza is the daughter of the Duke of Milan, a man not known for his tempered tastes or actions. The Duke is mean, cruel and superstitious, and the only one he seems to like is his daughter, Caterina. She takes after him in many ways, including his sometimes cruel behavior and love of wonton actions and excesses. In her later years, this inherited personality trait will serve her well. A fiercely brave person, she always manages to get her way, either by direct action or coercion --- a tactic learned from her father. When Caterina is married off to Count Girolamo Riario, a man like her father in ways, she forces her way to Rome to meet him, even though he has warned her off due to... Read more
With "The Scarlet Contessa", Jeanne Kalogridis returns to the intrigue-filled era of the Italian Renaissance that she so skillfully brought to life in "The Devil's Queen", "I, Mona Lisa", and "The Borgia Bride". "Scarlet Contessa" tells the story of the headstrong Caterina Sforza, Countess of Imola and Forli, who famously faced off against Cesare Borgia at the fortress of Ravinaldo in Forli in 1499.

Rather than having her main character tell the tale, however, Kalogridis instead tells Caterina's story with the voice of her lady-in-waiting and chief companion, the orphaned Dea. Dea has a gift for seeing the future, especially through the use of "triumph cards" (the predecessor to the modern-day tarot). Through Dea's eyes, we watch Caterina go from a spoiled and somewhat unlikeable girl favored by her libertine father, the Duke of Milan, to an iron-willed, sexually rapacious, and politically astute woman who commands armies and defies the Pope himself, culminating in the... Read more
With the new Showtime series The Borgias, publishers and authors have begun the cascade of Borgia-era novels. I've seen no fewer than five new Borgia-inspired novels being published (or republished) this year. I'm sure that's only the beginning. With the increased interest in the Borgias and all things Renaissance Italy has come a a resurgence in older Borgia novels, including Jeanne Kalogridis' The Borgia Bride and her 2010 novel, The Scarlet Contessa. But Kalogridis has been painting the world of Renaissance Italy on the page for years with the most vivid and well-trained hand out there.

In The Scarlet Contessa, Kalogridis takes on Caterina Sforza, the daughter of the Duke of Milan, a fascinating and strong Renaissance woman who dared to defy Cesare Borgia, son of the notorious Pope Alexander VI (aka Rodrigo Borgia). Told through the eyes of Caterina's servant, Dea, who possesses the unique ability to read Tarot cards and foretell Caterina's future, Scarlet Contessa tells... Read more
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