The Sonnet Lover by Carol Goodman
A Novel

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For how thy memory has lingered on–
In spite of cruelest winter’s drear and howl–
By inner mirror seen; I’ve dwelled upon,
I must confess, my treachery most foul.

Did Shakespeare pen a series of passionate sonnets, unknown to modern scholarship, ardently praising a mysterious dark-haired beauty? This tantalizing question is raised in a letter to literature professor Rose Asher. But the letter’s author, Rose’s star pupil, is not telling. A troubled, enigmatic young man, he plunged to his death in front of the college’s entire faculty, an apparent suicide. Determined to find the truth, Rose journeys from New York to Italy, back to the magnificent Tuscan villa where as an undergraduate she first fell in love.

La Civetta is a dreamlike place, resplendent with the heady scent of lemon trees and the sunset’s ocher wash across its bricks and cobbles. Once there Rose finds her first love still in residence. Torn between her mission and her rekindled feelings, Rose becomes enmeshed in a treacherous tangle of secrets and scandal. A folio containing what some believe to be one of Shakespeare’s lost sonnets has vanished, and literary immortality awaits whoever finds the manuscript–as do a vast Italian estate and a Hollywood movie deal. Uncertain whom she can trust and where she can turn, Rose races against time and unseen enemies in a bid to find the missing masterpiece.

Lush, lyrical, and enthralling, The Sonnet Lover vividly brings to life the Tuscan countryside and the fascinating world of the Renaissance poets. Unmatched in her ability to evoke atmosphere and intrigue, Carol Goodman delivers her most ambitious and satisfying work to date, a seductive novel that skillfully propels its reader headlong to the final suspenseful page.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Carol Goodman

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Carol Goodman is the author of The Seduction of Water and The Lake of Dead Languages. Her work has appeared in such journals as The Greensboro Review, Literal Latté, The Midwest Quarterly, and Other Voices. After graduating from Vassar College, where she majored in Latin, she taught Latin for several years in Austin, Texas. She then received an M.F.A. in fiction from the New School University. Goodman currently teaches writing in New York City. She lives on Long Island.
Published June 12, 2007 by Ballantine Books. 370 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, History. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Sonnet Lover

Kirkus Reviews

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Rose Asher, a student in Hudson College’s summer program at villa La Civetta, fell in love with her professor, Bruno Brunelli.

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Publishers Weekly

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Multiple plots and subplots revolve around the manuscript's recovery, Robin's death, the film, Rose's clandestine relationship with college president Mark Abrams, Bruno's presence and worries that Bruno's son, Orlando, may be a murderer.

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Book Reporter

I’m going back…and I am trying to decide what classes to take.” La Civetta is an exquisite villa in Tuscany, and its owner, Cyril Graham, a former Hudson bigwig, allows students to take classes there every summer.

Jun 12 2007 | Read Full Review of The Sonnet Lover: A Novel

The Bookbag

But when her favourite student, Robin Weiss, falls from a hotel balcony amidst accusations of plagiarism, Rose finds herself returning to La Civetta and the ghosts of her past, hoping that if she can find the link between the villa and the Dark Lady of Shakespeare's sonnets, she will also uncover...

Dec 01 2012 | Read Full Review of The Sonnet Lover: A Novel

Monsters and Critics

Weiss had recently come back from Tuscany, where he had been studying at Villa La Civetta where, so legend suggests, the Dark Lady - poet Ginevra de Laura - once lived.

Dec 05 2007 | Read Full Review of The Sonnet Lover: A Novel

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