Monday, September 3, 2012

New Review: Jannine Corti-Petska’s THE LILY AND THE FALCON – A Wonderful Dive into Renaissance Italy and a Great Love Story

First in Corti-Petska’s Italian Medieval Series set in 15th century Renaissance Italy, this tells the story of the “lily,” Bianca Albizzi, who is forced to marry the handsome young Medici heir, the “falcon,” Cristiano de’Medici, to end the rivalry between their two powerful families. But Bianca’s brother blames Cristiano and the Medici for their mother’s death and plots against him. Bianca is caught in the crossfire. Cristiano doesn’t trust her and her brother threatens her life unless she betrays her new husband.

Corti-Petska captures the time (1433-34) and the place (Florence, Italy) so that this becomes not only a trip to Italy, but also a trip into the past. She uses enough of the language and the common terms of the era to bring to life the time when wealthy warring families controlled the city-states. Her dialog is natural and creates both tension and suspense as she serves up a worthy story of love and treachery.

I liked that the relationship developed as one would imagine it might. Cristiano has an unwilling love at first sight experience but denies his heart; and Bianca, who is dragged kicking and screaming in to the relationship, is the one who recognizes the strong love she is coming to feel for her new husband. I think you’ll like this one; I recommend it.

The Medieval series thus far:

THE LILY AND THE FALCON (Republic of Florence, 1433)
SURRENDER TO HONOR (Palermo, Sicily 1440)
DANTE’S FLAME (Kingdom of Naples, 1437)

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