4 out of 4 stars
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For fans of The Da Vinci Code and Revolution, The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci by Belle Ami follows main character Angela on her quest to find a long lost Da Vinci painting, while escaping bad guys and falling for dreamy art detective Alex. Plagued by visions from the past, recent art history graduate Angela needs only to survive a hellish internship to break into the art world. When she hears a rumor of a secret, undocumented Da Vinci painting, she soon realizes her visions are leading her to the location of the painting, and everything is not always as it seems. Joined by dreamy ex-military art detective Alex, Angela fights against the clock (and private art collectors) to save the Da Vinci and bring it back into the light where it belongs.
Beautifully written, this book truly transports you to the Italian countryside. Depictions of scenery were so vivid I could picture how Alex and Angela were truly living. From the grand halls of the Uffizi, to Alex’s winery in Montefioralle, the descriptions of scenery in this book were always poetic and just took just the right amount of time, with no long-winded paragraphs making me wonder when the book was going to get back into the action. It is also incredibly well researched, with all of the historical context and paintings being accurate.
The characters were also beautifully flushed out, with well rounded backgrounds and plot lines. Without going overboard, Ami gives us a succinct description of who the characters are, and how they all end up looking for the same painting. Even the characters in Angela’s visions are written well enough where I felt as though they were also main players in the storyline, not visions from the past.
With an interesting concept from the beginning, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I enjoyed all parts of this novel. Historical fiction is not usually a genre I gravitate towards, but the premise was just too interesting not to investigate. For any other readers that also sometimes are afraid to step out of their comfort zones, I am overall very happy with my decision to make the leap into the unknown and try out this historical fiction. It had just the right amount of historical undertone, mixed in with all of the modern day settings.
I give this book 4 out of 4 stars. It was wonderfully edited, with no visible mistakes. It also was delightfully fun and charming to read. I fell in love with Angela from page one, and read this book as fast as I could while still retaining all of the information that is packed in. It is definitely on my will read again list.
The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci
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