Title: The Vatican Princess
Author: C.W. Gortner
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publish Date: February 9, 2016
What's the Story?:
From Goodreads.com: "Glamorous and
predatory, the Borgias became Italy’s most ruthless and powerful family,
electrifying and terrorizing their 15th-century Renaissance world.
this day, Lucrezia Borgia is known as one of history’s most notorious
villainesses, accused of incest and luring men to doom with her arsenal
International bestselling author C.W. Gortner’s new
novel delves beyond the myth to depict Lucrezia in her own voice, from
her pampered childhood in the palaces of Rome to her ill-fated,
scandalous arranged marriages and complex relationship with her adored
father and her rival brothers—brutal Juan and enigmatic Cesare."
My Two Cents:
"The Vatican Princess" is the story of Lucrezia Borgia, a member of one of the most infamous families in history. The book captures the politics and salaciousness of the rule of the Borgias with great detail that pulled me in quickly. While this book covers a lot of the things that many history lovers know or have heard about the Borgias, Gortner breathes life into the story telling it from Lucrezia's perspective. She is quite young when the book opens so we get to see a lot of her life throughout the book. Gortner makes it easy to see why so many of us (myself included) can't get enough of the Borgias.
C.W. Gortner is one of my favorite authors and I will read anything he puts out. I was interested to see his take on the Borgias. As I mentioned before, he covers a lot of the truths and rumors that history lovers may already be familiar with. For instance, the rumored incest between Lucrezia and her brothers is present. The description is sometimes brutal but not overly so for the story that Gortner is trying to tell. The panache of his delivery is what makes this book special. By having Lucrezia as our narrator, we are pulled right into the thick of the saga of the Borgias. We see her go from a young, naive girl to someone who learns how to play the game. I loved following her in this book.
I think the author does a great job of capturing the politics that drove the Borgias. This is a power hungry family and each member of the family becomes quite adept at getting what they want in many different ways. Gortner does a great job of showing all of the in's and out's and alliances that drive each character. I loved all of the detail. Gortner's book will transport you back to a time where power was everything and you either lead, followed, or stepped aside.