New Giveaway: Leonardo's Swans by Karen Essex

Author Karen Essex has seen what fun we are having here with all of the delicious giveaways and wanted to add more yumminess to the mix!!  Karen is offering up 1 copy of Leonardo's Swans to giveaway to a lucky winner!!  All together now....thank you Karen!!


Giveaway is open to US entries ONLY.  Giveaway ends on February 20th.  Just leave a comment with your email to enter.

SYNOPSIS:  Embraced not only by readers worldwide, but by Italy’s most respected art historians and critics, Leonardo's Swans recreates the decadence, glamour and treacherous politics that defined the Renaissance. Set against the glittering backdrop of the court of Milan, Essex paints the canvas of a world in which no pleasure was denied to those in power, and where the fate of Europe lay in the balance. Here, where Leonardo was creating his most enduring masterpieces—The Last Supper, The Virgin of the Rocks, The Mona Lisa, The Lady with an Ermine—a great rivalry between two royal sisters began.

At the heart of Leonardo's Swans is the complex relationship between two of Leonardo’s patrons and muses, Isabella and Beatrice d’Este. Despite their love for each other, a lust for power drove them both. Isabella was known throughout Europe for her unparalleled beauty, poise, intelligence, and exquisite taste. Her tempestuous younger sister, 15-year-old Beatrice, was an equestrienne and lover of the outdoors. Beatrice’s naïve and rebellious nature complemented her childish appearance, but as all would soon discover, these innocent looks hid darker complexities.


While initially thrilled by her marriage to the future Marquis of Mantua, Isabella’s happiness turns to jealousy when Beatrice is married off to the infinitely more powerful Ludovico Sforza—the future Duke of Milan. Though he is her sister’s husband, this playboy and powerbroker fascinates the young Isabella. He also holds the key to her life ambition—to be immortalized in oil by the great Leonardo da Vinci. Underestimating Beatrice’s will for supremacy, Isabella embarks on a plan to seduce Ludovico. As Europe begins to crumble around them, the sisters find themselves in a desperate game, caught between familial loyalty and a perilous battle for power.

Leonardo's Swans uncovers the history of the illustrious Este sisters, as well as the mystery, genius, and drama behind Leonardo’s most famous works. The painter’s presence drives the story as his art divides the sisters farther apart. Drawing on excerpts from Leonardo’s own notebooks and letters, Essex reveals the human side of the artist, who, despite his now legendary status, was then a man caught between expressing his own genius and appeasing his demanding and powerful patrons.

In her research, Essex traversed northern Italy, visiting Ferrara, where the sisters were born, as well as Milan and Mantua, where Beatrice and Isabella reigned, and the lesser known rural “pleasure palaces” of the royals. Essex poured through the sisters’ personal correspondence as well as hundreds of accounts of court life in the Renaissance. Her evocative and accurate portrait the era prompted Italy’s premier art historian, Vittorio Sgarbi, to lavishly praise the book and already has inspired many teachers to use the book in their classes.

 
As in her acclaimed biographical novels, Kleopatra and Pharaoh, Essex once again reveals women’s hidden history and delivers an historical novel whose details encompass the social, political and artistic currents of its time and place. What emerges is not only an entertaining escape to Renaissance Italy but a smart, sophisticated, and multi-textured novel

Karen Essex's Website.

GOOD LUCK!!!


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54 comments:

  1. WoW Another fabulous book to try and win!
    Thanks!
    Marie
    zquilts@centurytel.net

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sounds like a fascinating book. Thanks for the giveaway--sign me up!

    nurseexec(dot)lb(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oooh, and that's my 28th wedding anniversary! A wonderful gift for this Art History major, eh?
    heh heh
    please enter me,
    thank you
    kaiminani at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  4. This book sounds really good!
    amandarwest at gmaildotcom

    ReplyDelete
  5. I've never read anything by Essex, but I recently added her book Kleopatra to my reading wishlist. Thanks for the giveaway!

    fitz12383(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  6. Would love to win!
    bellevieanne@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. Would deffo love to win :)

    rubs.escalona [at] gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Art and history- a great combination. Please enter me in the giveaway.

    wolfcarol451(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  9. This book sounds fabulous!

    Thank you for the entry!

    Wendy
    wendysfictionaddiction(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love well researched, compelling books. This one fills the bill nicely.

    librarypat AT comcast DOT net

    ReplyDelete
  11. Thank you for hosting this! I would love to be entered for a chance to win.

    kdhaney at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  12. English historical fiction is my normal reading zone, but recently I've read HF with an art/artist connection and found them very interesting. I'd love to try this book. Thanks for the giveaway.
    lcbrower40(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  13. Another wonderful find of yours to giveaway!


    mystica123athotmaildotcom

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'd love to win this one, please sign me up!

    strawn dot elizabeth at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great review! I'd love to read this. Thanks for the chance to win a copy!

    geebee.reads AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  16. This sounds great! Please enter me.

    jasmyn9[at]hotmail[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  17. What a great book to giveaway! Thanks for hosting this. Please sign me up!

    amusedbybooks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  18. I have been wanting to read this book. Please enter me, and thank you for hosting such fabulous giveaways.
    knittingmomof3 (AT) gmail (DOT) com

    ReplyDelete
  19. Great contest! Please enter me!
    kghobbs@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  20. Oh my...I take a few days off (to move...finally) and your site is exploding with such great giveaways Amy...cool beans :} Would love to win a copy of this juicy historical novel full of sibling rivalry! rlphilbr13@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  21. I just found your site and I can tell you I love it. I would love a chance to win this.

    Risingsouth at aol dot com

    ReplyDelete
  22. This looks great! Please enter me!

    BethsBookReviewBlog AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  23. This sounds so good! Please enter my name in the giveaway.
    meah56 AT gmail DOT com

    Thanks for the chance : )

    ReplyDelete
  24. Oooooo...sounds like a good one. Please count me in. Thank you.


    cyeates AT nycap DOT rr DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  25. Thank you, thank you, thank you, for another great giveaway!

    libneas[at]aol[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  26. Thank you fr the giveaway. It's one of my favorite time and places!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Thank you, Karen!

    teabird17 AT yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  28. Well, you hooked me with O Juliet, which I bought yesterday, so sign me up for what looks to be another great book.

    jagreensmith-at-yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  29. I'm in! :o) Thanks for the opportunity!

    ReplyDelete
  30. Sounds like a great read! Please enter me, thanks.

    ~Bella
    nunezbella at hotmail dotcom

    ReplyDelete
  31. Would love to win the book - definitely on my TBR list!

    Ann
    summergal05 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  32. Enter me please, Thank you!!!

    momkelly2003(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  33. I'd love to read this! Thanks for the giveaway!

    Rachelhwallen@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  34. This book has been on my TBR radar for so long! I would love to be entered in the contest!

    emily DOT wittenberg @gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  35. What a great giveaway! I love this book. Please don't enter me though as I already own it.

    ReplyDelete
  36. New to your blog and really enjoying it. I have added so many book titles to my wishlist. Love historical fiction! Please enter me in your giveaway. Thank you!

    Sandee61

    Muzzley56[at]aol[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  37. justpeachy36@yahoo.com

    Please enter me in the giveaway.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Sounds like a great read. I really enjoy historical novels. Please enter me. Thanks!

    ayancey(at)dishmail(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
  39. I'd love to enter! Thanks!

    aikychien at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  40. please enter me!

    j.brol at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  41. This is one of the books that I have on my TBR list. I so want to read this book. Please enter me in this giveaway. Thanks.

    bstilwell12 at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  42. Thank you for the review
    would love a copy
    copperllama at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  43. Historical books are the best!

    rhoneygtn at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  44. Sounds like a great read. Please include me in the giveaway.

    heatherzilla(at)care2(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  45. Thanks for letting me know about the giveaway. I'd love to be entered. milou2ster(at)gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  46. Thanks for a chance to win this book!

    jlhal@verizon.net

    ReplyDelete
  47. Looks very interesting!

    yvonrobin@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  48. Please count me in.

    cindyc725 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  49. Intrigue and love; what could be a better combination?

    Thanks for the contest.

    Much good luck to you with the book!

    Keta Diablo
    ketadiablo@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  50. Please enter me in this giveaway!

    saemmerson at yahoo dot com

    Sarah E

    ReplyDelete
  51. Thank you for the opportunity - I would love to be entered into the giveaway!

    tiffanyannbutton[at]gmail[dot]com

    Thanks again!

    ReplyDelete
  52. Whew, almost missed this. Please enter me - thanks!

    mclean416(at)gmail(dot)com

    It's so wonderful that you do so many giveways

    ReplyDelete
  53. I would love to win this. Please enter me.

    lizzi0915 at aol dot com

    ReplyDelete

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