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The Phoenix of Florence

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Author: Philip Kazan

Genre: Historical Fiction
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 9780749022136
Rights: World English
Pub. Date: 21st February 2019

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Price: £14.99

Format: Hardback

Synopsis of book»

16th century Italy, deep in the Tuscan countryside, a long-held feud between two aristocratic families ends in tragedy, leaving only one young girl alive. Having barely escaped with her life, she vows to survive at all costs …

Years later, amidst the winding streets and majestic facades of Florence, two murders are not all they seem. As Onorio Celavini, commander of the Medici police force, investigates, he is horrified to find a personal connection to the crimes, and a conspiracy lurking beyond. The secrets of his past threaten to spill out and Celavini is forced to revisit the traumatic memories hidden deep within him to lay the ghosts of history to rest.

Poignant and compelling, The Phoenix of Florence is a richly told and cleverly crafted tale of a  struggle for identity and a battle for justice in an Italy besieged by war.


What You Say»                                                             Add your review »

I approached The Phoenix of Florence with a sense of eager anticipation and I’m happy to report I was not disappointed. Far from it. I loved every compelling page of the book.
Based on the book description, you’d be right in expecting an intriguing historical mystery, an enigmatic central character and an evocative depiction of 15th century Tuscany. However it’s a fair bet that, like me, you won’t be expecting everything that unfolds.
As Onorio Celavini diligently and methodically embarks on the investigation into two deaths, a name is mentioned that triggers very personal and painful memories from the past. Suddenly the story is moving in an entirely different but totally enthralling direction. The reader gains an insight into many of the perplexing facets of Onorio’s character: the source of his disturbing “soldier’s dreams”, his remarkable expertise at fencing, the reason for his decision to live alone and the origin of the scars people cannot fail to notice.
It seems Onorio has much to hide, things he is fearful may be revealed. “Like all things, concealment becomes a habit.” In fact, concealment and imitation are themes that run through the book, whether by necessity, through treachery or by inclination.
The Phoenix of Florence is a compelling, powerful, multi-layered historical mystery that serves up one unexpected delight after another. There are action-packed scenes of battle, insights into the life of a mercenary and the politics of Florence, as well as evocative descriptions of landscape and details of everyday life that really immerse the reader in the period. I absolutely loved it.Cathy Johnson

Other Books by this author                                  See full list »

  • The Black Earth
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