In repressive 1691 Florence, sculptor Gaetano Zummo is commissioned by the Grand Duke to create a life-size Venus out of wax, in this 2013 novel by the author of The Insult and The Book of Revelation. Even as he falls under the spell of an apothecary's elusive daughter, Zummo must stay on guard against the machinations of the Medici court—particularly the sinister Dominican priestess, Stufa.
"[Rupert] Thomson brings Renaissance-era Florence to life with rich descriptions and scenic locales.... Historical fiction fans in general will relish the virtual trip brimming with mystery and intrigue."—Booklist
"A novel rich as the past it conjures up, weaving a story as playful and disturbing as the strange wax sculptures that its hero gives life to."—Sarah Dunant