Since this book attempts to describe the daily lives and lifestyles of people living during the Medieval period, the concept behind it is brilliant, so I had high expectations. Unfortunately, this book fails miserably in its execution.
I read the first chapter, the one on Bodo. It was OK, so I thought the book had potential. The next person was Marco Polo. After pages and pages in English, and also in Latin and French too (which I do not know), describing places, people, rulers, dates, trade-routes, and exotic merchandise connected with Venice (and still no mention of Marco Polo), it became difficult to decipher what she was saying since it was all so unfamiliar to me.
The author's narrative is difficult to follow, unless you are an academic scholar already well versed in the historical and literary events, people, and places she refers to in her work. The positive reviewers are most likely more learned and read than I, and could therefore follow the storyline and enjoy the book. However, for me, it became a chore to plow through the seemingly endless and unfamiliar references that form the basis of this book. I had to skip all the Latin and French parts, which are not translated into English. In the end, I gave up. Even though I did not enjoy the book, I gave it two stars because the Kindle edition is free, if you want to try.
If you are knowledgeable about the Medieval Period and its history then you might enjoy this narrative. If you want more down-to-earth descriptions about the people and lifestyle of the Medieval period, I suggest you search for a book that is easier to read.