The Malice of Fortune

Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher: Random House (Audio)

Date: September 2012

Duration: 14 hours 54 minutes

Summary:

Against a teeming canvas of Borgia politics, Niccolò Machiavelli and Leonardo da Vinci come together to unmask an enigmatic serial killer, as we learn the secret history behind one of the most controversial works in the western canon, The Prince...
When Pope Alexander dispatches a Vatican courtesan, Damiata, to the remote fortress city of Imola to learn the truth behind the murder of Juan, his most beloved illegitimate son, she cannot fail, for the scheming Borgia pope holds her own young son hostage. Once there, Damiata becomes a pawn in the political intrigues of the pope's surviving son, the charismatic Duke Valentino, whose own life is threatened by the condottieri, a powerful cabal of mercenary warlords. Damiata suspects that the killer she seeks is one of the brutal condottierri, and as the murders multiply, her quest grows more urgent. She enlists the help of an obscure Florentine diplomat, Niccolò Machiavelli, and Valentino's eccentric military engineer, Leonardo da Vinci, who together must struggle to decipher the killer's taunting riddles: Leonardo with his groundbreaking "science of observation" and Machiavelli with his new "science of men." Traveling across an Italy torn apart by war, they will enter a labyrinth of ancient superstition and erotic obsession to discover at its center a new face of evil-and a truth that will shake the foundations of western civilization.

"Epic... This is a dense narrative, permeated by the sights, sounds and smells of Renaissance Italy, and one that can stand shoulder to shoulder with Umberto Eco's Name of the Rose, with which it is sure to be compared." -Kirkus (starred review)

Genres:

  • Cynthia Smith

    I already had some background in Renaissance Italy so I wasn't lost among all the characters and the fighting. Sadly, the narration was a big distraction. Multiple narrators. First had too strong an accent and at times I would miss words trying to figure out what she was saying. The second (male voice) used different voices for different characters. I found that distracting too, although he did not have a strong accent so didn't lose some of the words.

  • Anonymous

    May very well have been an interesting story, but the reader was so bad, that I hardly got through the first CD. Did not bother with the rest of it.