Monday, 8 February 2021

The Secret Life of Sofonisba Anguissola by Melissa Muldoon + #Giveaway



Join us for this tour from Feb 1 to Feb 26, 2021!

Book Details:

Book Title: The Secret Life of Sofonisba Anguissola - the most famous woman you've never heard of by Melissa Muldoon
Category Adult Fiction (18+), 345 pages
Genre Historical Fiction, General Fiction
Publisher Matta Press
Release date December 2020
Content Rating: PG-13 + M. includes mature themes (suicide, adultery, sexual relations, murder)
 
Book Description:

Set in the sixteenth-century, The Secret Life of Sofonisba Anguissola tells the story of a woman’s passion for painting and adventure. In a world where women painters had little to no acknowledgment, she was singled out by Michelangelo and Vasari who recognized and praised her talent. Gaining the Milanese elite’s acclaim, she went on to become court painter to Spanish King Philip II and taught his queen to paint.

One can’t live such an extraordinary life without having stories to tell, and tell them Sofonisba does to Sir Anthony Van Dyke, who comes to visit her toward the end of her life. During their meeting, she agrees to reveal her secrets but first challenges the younger painter to find the one lie hidden in her tale. In a saga filled with intrigue, jealousy, buried treasure, unrequited love, espionage, and murder, Sofonisba’s story is played out against the backdrop of Italy, Spain, and Sicily. Throughout her life, she encounters talented artists, authoritative dukes, mad princes, religious kings, spying queens, vivacious viscounts, and dashing sea captains—even a Barbary pirate. But of all the people who fell in love with Sofonisba, only one captured her heart. The painter may have many secrets but the truth of her life is crystal clear from the beginning.

Always a strong, passionate woman with a dream, she was an intelligent artist who knew her self-worth and in the end, as Michelangelo had done for her, Sofonisba passed her brush to a new generation.

 Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ B&NBookshop 
Autographed from Author
Add to Goodreads


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I love discovering forgotten historical women, especially through reading fictionalised accounts of their lives. For some reason facts imparted through reading historical fiction seem to stick in my mind better than those from nonfiction books. Perhaps it is because I identify better with the emotional aspect of fictional writing which is often absent from straight biographies? In any case, I don't think I had heard of Sofonisba Anguissola prior to spotting Melissa Muldoon's new novel, even though the events described within this book are from the same era - and even involve many of the same people - as Francis I by Leonie Frieda and The Rival Queens by Nancy Goldstone.

Sofonisba benefited from having an unusually (for the times) supportive father who, once he discovered her precocious artistic talents, did everything within his power to create and further a career for her. Muldoon begins by introducing readers to an elderly Sofonisba who, in telling her life story to a young visitor, also tells us. I was a bit disconcerted at the switch from first to third person point of view, but soon got back into the tale. Muldoon writes in an engaging style with authentic historical details to deepen the atmosphere. Her characters felt genuine, especially the eternally bickering sisters, but I also loved that the man who captures Sofonisba's heart has a wisp of magical realism about him. The Secret Life of Sofonisba Anguissola is an entertaining portrait of a remarkable woman and I am grateful to Melissa Muldoon for bringing her out of obscurity so modern women such as myself can learn about her life and appreciate her surviving work.


Meet the Author:

Melissa Muldoon is the author of four novels set in Italy: Dreaming Sophia, Waking Isabella, Eternally Artemisia, and The Secret Life of Sofonisba Anguissola. All four books tell the stories of women and their journeys of self-discovery to find love, uncover hidden truths, and follow their destinies to shape a better future for themselves.

Melissa is also the author of the Studentessa Matta website, where she promotes the study of Italian language and culture through her dual-language blog written in Italian and English (studentessamatta.com). Studentessa Matta means the “crazy linguist” and has grown to include a podcast, Tutti Matti per l’Italiano and the Studentessa Matta, YouTube channel, Facebook page and Instagram feed. Melissa also created Matta Italian Language Immersion Programs, which she co-leads with Italian schools in Italy to learn Italian in Italy.

Through her website, she also offers the opportunities to live and study in Italy through Homestay programs. Melissa has a B.A. in fine arts, art history, and European history from Knox College, a liberal arts college in Galesburg, Illinois, as well as a master’s degree in art history from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. She has also studied painting and art history in Florence. She is an artist, designer, and illustrated the cover art for all four of her books. Melissa is the managing director of Matta Press

Connect with the author:
  Website Facebook ~ Twitter ~Instagram ~ Pinterest ~ Goodreads

Tour Schedule:

Feb 1 - The Pen and Muse Book Reviews - spotlight of all 3 books / giveaway
Feb 1 - Sefina Hawke's Books - spotlight of all 3 books
Feb 2 - Working Mommy Journal - review of Sofonisba / giveaway
Feb 2 - Books for Books - book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 3 - Working Mommy Journal - review of Isabella / giveaway
Feb 3 - Books for Books - review of Isabella
​Feb 4 - I'm All About Books - book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 5 - History from a Woman’s Perspective - review of Sofonisba 
Feb 8 - Olio by Marilyn - review of Sofonisba / author interview / giveaway
Feb 8 - Literary Flits - review of Sofonisba / giveaway
Feb 9 - History from a Woman’s Perspective - review of Artemisia
Feb 10 - Sadie's Spotlight - book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 10 - Gwendalyn’s Books - review of Sofonisba / author interview / giveaway
Feb 11 - History from a Woman’s Perspective - review of Isabella
Feb 11 - Books for Books - review of Artemisia
Feb 12 - Book Corner News and Reviews - book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 12 - Stephanie Jane - spotlight of all 3 books / giveaway
Feb 15 - Elizabeth McKenna - Author Blog - book spotlight / giveaway
Feb 16 - Deborah-Zenha Adams - book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Feb 16 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of Sofonisba / guest post / giveaway
Feb 17 - Gwendalyn’s Books - review of Isabella
Feb 17 - Locks, Hooks and Books - review of Sofonisba / giveaway
Feb 17 - Splashes of Joy - spotlight of all 3 books / author interview / giveaway
Feb 18 - Locks, Hooks and Books - review of Isabella / giveaway
Feb 18 - Books and Zebras @jypsylynn - review of Sofonisba / giveaway
Feb 19 - Locks, Hooks and Books - review of Artemisia / giveaway
Feb 19 - 30-something Travel - review of Sofonisba / guest post / giveaway
Feb 19 - Books Lattes & Tiaras - review of Sofonisba
Feb 22 - Books Lattes & Tiaras - review of Isabella
Feb 22 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of Isabella / giveaway
Feb 23 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of Artemisia / giveaway
Feb 23 - Jazzy Book Reviews - spotlight of all 3 books / giveaway
Feb 24 - Library of Clean Reads - review of Sofonisba / giveaway
Feb 25 - Olio by Marilyn - review of Artemisia / giveaway
Feb 26 - High Society Book Club & Reviews - review of Sofonisba + spotlight previous books / guest post / giveaway
Feb 26 - 30-something Travel - review of Isabella / giveaway
Feb 26 - Books Lattes & Tiaras - review of Artemisia


Enter the Giveaway:

Win a print or an audio copy of The Secret Life of Sofonisba Anguissola. (3 winners). Open to the USA only until the 5th March.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway


 

 

Search Literary Flits for more:
Books by Melissa Muldoon / Historical fiction / Books from America

1 comment:

  1. You don't see a lot of audiobook giveaways, which is crazy because they are insanely popular these days!

    ReplyDelete