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This review is from: Poison In The Blood: The Memoirs of Lucrezia Borgia (Paperback)
After reading 7 biographies on the Borgias and 3 fictional novels about them, I think I'm fairly familiar with the factual history. Unfortunately, one cannot say the same for this author. I was excited when I started reading as he opened in a way that really drew me in to the action. However, I only got 10% (reading on my Kindle, not sure how many pages), and couldn't force myself to continue. Everything from Alexander making his children swear to have no contact with their mother, Vannozza, to the events on the night of Juan's (Giovanni) murder, to Alfonso of Bisceglie being Lucrezia's first husband.....all completely false and that was only in the very beginning of the book. I can't even imagine how many more discrepancies there are in the book, but I certainly won't be finding out for myself. This is one of the worst examples of historical fiction I've ever come across. If you don't know, or care, about historical facts, you may enjoy this, but if you value accuracy in your historical fiction, take a pass on this one. There are too many high-quality novels on the time period to waste your time on this.
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 22, 2011, 7:36:20 PM PDT
NYC critic says:
What books would you recommend in place of this?
Posted on Feb 16, 2012, 5:43:26 AM PST
Susan Anderson says:
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 10:54:06 AM PST
The story may be great. I don't know. Because I am actually familiar with the historical facts of the people and times involved, I could not handle the historical inaccuracies. If one doesn't know, or care, about historical fact, one could possibly enjoy this book quite a bit.
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 10:55:31 AM PST
I can't recommend any actually. I think there is a lot of room for some good historical fiction in this area. Know any authors who actually know their Borgia history? :)
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012, 11:08:17 AM PST
One does not need to finish a book in order to hate it, my dear. :)
In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2012, 6:10:19 PM PST
I don't know my Borgia history, but Roberta Gellis, who I generally respect for her historical knowledge, wrote a mystery I enjoyed: Lucrezia Borgia and the Mother of Poisons
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2012, 2:46:33 AM PST
For recommendations, I've read four other Borgia novels by three different authors: "Light on Lucrezia" and "Madonna of the Seven Hills" by Jean Plaidy, "The Borgia Bride" by Jeanne Kalogridis, and "Sins of the House of Borgia" by Sarah Bower. All are superior to this in my opinion. Plaidy's are pretty accurate but not everyone likes her writing style. Kalogridis makes use of the speculations of incest and poison but keeps within the bounds known history (ie, doesn't dismiss large chunks of Lucrezia's life as though it never happened). I think Bower also took advantage of pre-existing speculations but her strength was in her very poetic writing style.
There's also a young adult series I haven't read by Sara Poole. And I'd like to read Roberta Gellis' novel but it's not available on Kindle and also appears to be out of print.
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