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Donna Bianca is deeply in love with Raul, the best friend she grew up with, but she has no choice but to say good-bye to him when her father forces them apart. A decade later, they’re reunited — but Raul has become a different man…

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Preview 30 Pages

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3.5 it needed more pages 4  4

So, I got this harlequin because I had extra points and it was a historical romance in a place we rarely read: Italy. It’s Italy in the 1400’s during the Renaissance Era or if you need a better example: the tv show, “Medici”. It’s set in Florence at it’s height for the arts and technology as well as Merchants gaining power and money. The heroine has come back home as widow after her decade old atrocious marriage. And she’s just found out that her childhood lover has come back and he was on the enemy’s side. The enemy turns out to be the Pope who doesn’t like that Florence is a hotspot for intellectuals, arts, and how the merchants are getting richer. And he’s not the only one with a grudge against Florence and their people. The hero has a great grudge because his family was continually mocked for profession as knights, which is both dying and poor profession. Then there’s also him being an illegitimate child, something the heroine’s father constantly and rudely remarks. Now, he’s come back and the men who’ve mocked him now quake in their boots. His presence causes the heroine’s father’s comrades to turn blame on him since it was his words that caused the hero to reject their proposals. The father uses the mind of a merchant rather than a human one to lure the hero in with money and then his blessing to marry the heroine. Of course, the hero rejects both offers because the man doesn’t get there are people who value honor over materialistic things. The hero also lashes out at the heroine for breaking their promise of marriage. He has no idea the heroine did it because her father would have kicked the hero and his dying father out on the streets. Plus, her marriage in Rome was horrible when people isolated her for not giving her husband an heir when she vaguely reveals the man was gay. She of course can’t tell the hero the truth because he wouldn’t believe her anyway. The two fight a lot but their love grows starts resurfacing. The hero tries to deny it till one of the Pope’s assassins tries to kill her. He fights and wins but nearly dies too. It’s only thanks to the heroine’s constant nursing that he survives. During his bedridden state, the father did some serious reflection on his views and values. He sincerely apologizes to the hero. Then when the hero and heroine are alone, both apologize and confess their love for the other. That is the last we see because we see the Head of the Medici working with an artist to create artworks in representing women. Then that’s the end. The story wasn’t too bad but I would have liked a few more pages.

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