When young Francesco Angeli sees a golden-haired woman being pulled from the Tiber on a rainy Rome morning, he is shocked to realize that he knows her. It is 1508, and Francesco is a reluctant houseboy to Michelangelo, who is at work on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Francesco prefers the company of the urbane Raphael and the artistic circle that gathers at the home of Imperia, who operates a brothel in the shadow of the Vatican while the all-powerful Pope Julius II turns a blind eye. The woman in the river is one of Imperia’s ladies, and against his will, Francesco becomes involved in the search for the truth about her death.
Meanwhile, rising waters flood the city’s streets, turning Romans into refugees and the Coliseum into an emergency refuge, and hungry wolves descend from the hills to stalk the city like ghosts. As Francesco follows the deepening mystery from the backstreets to the pope’s inner sanctum, he begins to realize that danger and corruption may lurk behind the most beautiful of facades.
THE WOLVES OF ST. PETER’S by Gina Buonaguro and Janice Kirk is an intriging book of Historical Fiction and mystery. Set in the early 1500’s in Rome, it tells Francesco Angeli’s tale while incorporating famous Renaissance artists into the mix – perhaps THE most famous of them all, Michelangelo and Raphael. To say his story is thrilling is an understatement!
I love a book that easily blends fictional characters with historical ones in such a manner that you begin to wonder if they were, perhaps, a real person. I also love it when historical figures are brought to glorious life on the pages, making you feel like you know them. Gina and Janice easily do both of these things on the pages of this book. Not only that, but character development is excellent – no cookie cutter, one dimensional characters to be found! The books flows easily and keeps the reader fully engulfed from start to finish.
Having read all of the books these two authors have co-written, I can honestly call myself a fan. Check out their other books (especially THE SIDEWALK ARTIST!), you won’t be disappointed.
You can find more information on their past and upcoming books HERE.