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The Story of My Life (Penguin Classics) Paperback – May 1, 2001
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Top Customer Reviews
It is horrible! All the good parts have been "abridged" out of it.
This is one of the silliest ideas I ever heard-but Penguin apparently tried to "clean up" Casanova. They have removed most of his stories about seduction from his auto-biography! Since Casanova was the world's greatest lover, I don't know why they think anyone would want the book except to read about seductions but those are exactly the parts they took out!
Only Penguin could make Casanova boring.
Buy a different edition of the book!
The book is written in a flowing style, descriptive to the point where the reader gains almost a visceral impression of 18th century Europe. Casanova's escape from the Venetian prison, for example, has all the suspense and realism of our modern thrillers. I could almost hear his finger nails scraping against the prison walls as he descended, sliding down in the dead of night during his escape. In his meeting with Voltaire, the gnome-like genius came to life, as they discussed the state of literature and the greatest poets of the ages.Read more ›
Giacomo Geronimo Casanova was born in 1725 at Venice to parents who were actors. At a young age he was brought to a boarding school near Padua where the child developed a precociousness which impressed his elders. At 17, he obtained a doctorate in law from the University of Padua and began a career in the clergy. He travelled to southern Italy and Rome and became a secretary to the cardinal. His career with the church was cut short by scandal, an occurence which would become a fixture all throughout his life. Shortly after he joined the army as an officer of low-rank for the Republic of Venice and was stationed at Corfu, but gave up military life to become a violinist back at Venice. At the age of 21, he saved the life of a Venetian nobleman who became a patron of long-standing to the young man and who elevated him to the status of a wealthy gentleman. This gave him the privilege to travel across the breadth of Europe, meeting famous people of the day and pursuing amorous encounters where his lasting reputation rests. A talented conversationalist, he was frequently invited to the social circles of diverse European society, rubbing shoulders equally with cobblers and royalty. His fickle and temperamental personality got him into frequent scrapes with the law: he duped gullible socialites, started lotteries; became a spy, diplomat, and writer. The Inquisition of Venice accused him of witchcraft and was sentenced to imprisonment in "The Leads" prison, one of the most secure penal infrastructures of the time, where he made a sensational escape.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent glimpse into 1700's Europe as well as being a fun read. I give it 4 stars because I don't know how close this is to the original, and the flowery language can be a little... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Max Roga
Made a great gift for a good friend of mine who is very into him.Published 23 months ago by Matthew Stocker
I really liked this book because it is well written and gives a good understanding of the life and times of Casanova. Read morePublished on December 11, 2009 by Habib Wahid
This book is interesting in the stories of what went on from 1725 to about 179?. Casanova's adventures were many and varied. Read morePublished on March 25, 2009 by G. Degenhart
Reading this book was a real chore. And a real snore.
Given the sensational subject matter and the supposed wit and charm of the author, I had the feeling I was reading... Read more
I gave this book four stars only because Casanova is such a well-known figure whose name has actually entered the English language. Read morePublished on July 23, 2008 by Ron Braithwaite