Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Borgia Bride - Jeanne Kalogridis

Rated: 9 stars

The Borgia Bride: A Novel

Vivacious Sancha of Aragon arrives in Rome newly wed to a member of the notorious Borgia dynasty. Surrounded by the city's opulence and political corruption, she befriends her glamorous and deceitful sister-in-law, Lucrezia, whose jealousy is as legendary as her beauty. Some say Lucrezia has poisoned her rivals, particularly those to whom her handsome brother, Cesare, has given his heart. So when Sancha falls under Cesare's irresistible spell, she must hide her secret or lose her life. Caught in the Borgias' sinister web, she summons her courage and uses her cunning to outwit them at their own game. Vividly interweaving historical detail with fiction, The Borgia Bride is a richly compelling tale of conspiracy, sexual intrigue, loyalty, and drama


If you like scandal, this book is for you. Although this is filled with the highest of taboos, this book manages to maintain beautiful character development and a full, deep plot - it escapes the typical downward spiral to Gossip Girl style (which, although a guilty pleasure of mine, does not count as any kind of serious literature). Although it has a slow start, I think it only adds to the depth of the novel as the first few chapters introduce you to the true character of the main players in this novel. You become so attached to Sancha that you feel her heartbreak and rage through each trial she has. Kalogridis's prose only enhances these feelings - she expresses Sancha's range of emotions - from love to hatred, rage to despair, perfectly. This book has EVERYTHING: a page-turning plot, expressive prose, excellent character development. What I love most about this book? Based on what I have read surrounding this era - despite all the mind-defying is a feasible interpretation of the Borgia's and those who were affected by their opulent lifestyle.


A very interesting interpretation of the historical events surrounding the mysterious deaths and scandals of the Borgias. Very well written, full of intrigue - historical fiction at its best. A very good read.


Historical fiction lovers - especially for possibly the most scandalous age of Italian history. This would also appeal to those who like reading about love, war, betrayal, etc. Basically a book that can appeal to anyone who doesn't mind a little history.

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