In the Name of the Family

In the Name of the Family

A Novel

Book - 2017
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Before the Corleones, before the Lannisters, there were the Borgias. One of history's most notorious families comes to life in this riveting bestseller, as the House of Borgia crosses paths with a young diplomat named Niccol#65533; Machiavelli.

"Full to the brim with vivid historical details both gory and beautiful." --Library Journal

It is 1502 and Rodrigo Borgia, a self-confessed womanizer and master of political corruption, is now on the papal throne as Alexander VI. His daughter Lucrezia, aged twenty-two--already three times married and a pawn in her father's plans--is discovering her own power. And then there is his son Cesare Borgia, brilliant, ruthless and increasingly unstab≤ it is his relationship with Machiavelli that gives the Florentine diplomat a master class on the dark arts of power and politics. What he learns will go on to inform his great work of modern politics, The Prince. But while the pope rails against old age and his son's increasingly maverick behavior, it is Lucrezia who must navigate the treacherous court of Urbino and another challenging marriage to create her own place in history.

Bestselling novelist Sarah Dunant employs her remarkable gifts as a storyteller to bring to life the passionate men and women of the Borgia family, as well as the ever-compelling figure of Machiavelli, through whom the reader will experience one of the most fascinating--and doomed--dynasties of all time.

Publisher: Toronto :, HarperCollins Publishers,, [2017]
Edition: First Canadian edition
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9781443406475
Branch Call Number: FIC DUN
Characteristics: 429 pages ; 24 cm

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Chapel_Hill_AmandaG Feb 20, 2017

This dazzling historical tale continues the Borgia epic that began in Blood and Beauty. Lucrezia is now on marriage three and is the newly minted duchess of Ferrara. Cesare is as power hungry as ever and is at the pinnacle of his career. Alexander VI is now an aging pope who is concerned about his family’s legacy. We see an introduction of a new voice, Niccolo Machiavelli, who is representing Florence’s interests but cannot help but be impressed by the machinations of the Borgia family. As always, Sarah Dunant succeeds in bringing history to life with her attention to detail and her well-fleshed out characters. She is not trying to erase Borgia’s bad reputation, but instead shed light on their very human motivations and desires. I appreciated that the author did not go for the story with the most scandal. Instead, she used the historical record to create a plausible telling of these characters and events. I especially enjoyed Machiavelli’s outsider perspective because it gave me an understanding of how contemporaries viewed this family. I would be hard pressed to find a complaint of this book other than I was left wishing for even more. The Borgias might still be a family we love to hate, but thanks to Sarah Dunant we might understand them a little more.

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