Tag Archives: Marina Fiorato

The Glassblower of Murano…A Book Review


The Glassblower of Murano by Marina Fiorato is one of the best books I have read recently. It is filled with history, intrigue…and is just a plain great love story! I whizzed through the book and wished it wouldn’t end!

The story flip flops between the present day, Leonora, and fifteenth century, Corradino…and relates the two through a shared Murano glass heart.

Corradino Manin was one of the most famous glassblowers of Renaissance Venice. His pieces were flawless, and his reputation became known throughout Europe. Corradino had an illegitimate daughter whom he loved deeply, and for whom he made a perfect glass heart that she could always carry with her. But Corradino led a dangerous life because of his glassblowing knowledge – a secret that belonged to Murano and that the Venetian nobility wanted to safeguard, but that others wanted to steal!

Leonora was a present day artist who was trying to discover herself after a failed marriage. She had been born in Venice, and decided to return to discover her family roots and find out about her ancestor, Corradino Manin. With her was the same glass heart that had been passed down through the generations.

Upon arriving in Venice, Leonora begins to discover the ghosts of her ancestors and is faced with many chilling revelations. But she also finds love! The places described in the book bring Venice alive. After having walked the same alleys and come upon the same piazzas mentioned in the book, you can just imagine yourself tredding the same tracks.

This book is a must read for anyone who loves Venice – from its mesmerizing beauty to its masked facade! Venice is both breathtaking but also a bit mysterious, and this book portrays the magic of it all.

I read this book as part if the Italy in Books Challenge 2011

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

The Botticelli Secret


Once again, I found an historical fiction novel of Italy which transported me back to the Renaissance and all it’s intriguing twists and turns.  The Botticelli Secret by Marina Fiorato is a page-turning story that scrutinizes The Primavera by Sandro Botticelli because it holds clues for members of  a secret group led by the powerful elite of Italy.  The heroine, Luciana, is on the run after having stolen a cartone (or practice sketch) of the painting.  Someone is out to get her because they are afraid she will discover the secret  hidden within the painting itself.  She doesn’t know who to turn to for help and protection, and finds the least-likely person whom she feels she can trust – a young monk about ready to take his final vows!  Together they embark on an adventure that takes them to many corners of Italy – from Naples in the South, to Bolzano in the North.  The language in the book is a bit brash, but given the source of the first person narrative, it is acceptable!  As with all historical fiction books, I always try to find the truth within these stories and perhaps discover new things.  The descriptions of places in Rome, Bolzano, Milan, Venice and Florence were all familiar to me.  Unfortunately, I have yet to visit Naples or Genoa, but this book has given me one more reason to go (as if I needed any more enticement!)   But most of all, I want to once again see Botticelli’s The Primavera and view it through the eyes of the author!

I wonder if the plot has some truth to it since it did finally happen (only a couple of hundred years later)!!!  Perhaps this was the impetus…Chissa….