Loredana by Lauro Martines
A Venetian Tale

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A dark, riveting tale of love, politics, and religion in sixteenth-century Venice--the embodiment of Leonardo da Vinci's ideal city. In early sixteenth-century Italy, two lovers, Loredana and Orso, seem ready to die rather than be separated.  Their tale unfolds in the two-tiered city of Venice, where the nobility have the upper tier and the light of the sun, while the common people, with their manual trades, occupy the lower city--the dark tier in the shadows.  Violating social and religious taboos, the passion of the lovers bridges the two cities. A beautiful young widow, Loredana, dreads the cruel judgment of her family, one of the most powerful houses in republican Venice.  Orso--a Dominican friar, mystic, and revolutionary--is in hiding, as the Venetian secret police scour the upper and lower cities for him.  When the authorities close in, guardsmen control all streets and waterways, and the two lovers are driven to write out their penitential confessions, unable to reach the one priest who would not betray them. Conjuring up the voices of lovers and of their age through a rich array of letters, confessions, secret-police proceedings, a diary, and a family chronicle, this is an astonishing take of politics, love, lust, and religious incandescence.

About Lauro Martines

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Lauro Martines is one of the worlds foremost historian's of the Italian Renaissance and early modern Europe. He is the author of nine books, most recently the critically acclaimed titles Fire in the City: Savonarola and the Struggle for the Soul of Renaissance Florence and April Blood: Florence and the Plot Against the Medici. Born in Chicago, he was a professor of history at UCLA. He now lives in London with his wife, the novelist Julia OFaolain.
Published June 25, 2013 by Thomas Dunne Books. 261 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Martines is a scholar of the Italian Renaissance, and his debut displays an exuberant pleasure in weaving obscure historical details into an operatically passionate love story.

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Publishers Weekly

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The vivid written confessions of a lustful young widow, the eponymous Loredana, and Orso, a Dominican friar with a liberal interpretation of his ecclesiastic vows, are the backbone of this engrossing tale set during the intrigues of Renaissance Venice's Council of Ten.

Oct 24 2005 | Read Full Review of Loredana: A Venetian Tale

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