The Assassin of Venice: A Novel (Hardcover)

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A Renaissance courtesan must choose between love and duty in this high stakes 16th-century mystery, perfect for fans of Madeline Hunter and Rhys Bowen.

Valentina Riccardi is many things: beautiful, cultured, deadly. As one of Venice’s famous courtesans, she’s perfectly positioned to seduce powerful men, get them alone, and assassinate them. Spies. Traitors. Who they are doesn’t matter—only that they made an enemy of the Council of Ten, the shadowy and seemingly omniscient power from which Valentina takes her orders without question.

Venice is her home, and after losing everything once before to an invading army, there is nothing she won’t do to protect her city, for there is nothing she loves more.

Almost nothing.

She vowed to never fall in love again, but Valentina can’t help but give her heart to Bastiano Bragadin, a fellow assassin. But when Bastiano starts asking the wrong questions, Valentina receives a new assignment: kill him.

Yet the more Valentina learns about the Council of Ten, the more she wonders if they are truly acting in the interest of the Venetian state, or using her for their own dark ambitions. If Valentina is to save Bastiano, she must untangle their conspiracy—with the help of her fellow courtesans—before it’s too late.

The Assassin of Venice is a captivating, sensual, high stakes read that brings 16th-century Venice to life, and draws on the fascinating real history of both Venetian cortigiane oneste—“honest courtesans”—and Renaissance Venice’s sprawling intelligence service.

About the Author

Alyssa Palombo is the author of five previous novels—The Violinist of Venice, The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence, The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel, and The Borgia Confessions—as well as the contemporary novel Heavy Metal Symphony, published as A.K. Palombo. Born and raised in Buffalo, NY, she graduated from Canisius College with degrees in English and creative writing and now works as a marketing copywriter for a software company. When not writing, she enjoys reading, traveling, spending time with her dog, planning for next Halloween, listening to music and going to concerts, and adding to her record collection.

Praise For…

Praise The Assassin of Venice:
“A tense, sexy work of historical fiction and political intrigue.”
Booklist, Starred Review

“A juicy tale of romantic suspense, elegantly appointed.”
Kirkus Reviews

“Alyssa Palombo brings the Renaissance to life in this mesmerizing story of a courtesan turned assassin. The beautiful but deadly Valentina entertains powerful men by day and moonlights for the shadowy Council of Ten by night, removing Venice's enemies by poison or blade as required—but when the latest directive demands she eliminate the only man she has ever loved, Valentina is thrown into a desperate quandary. The Assassin of Venice is a lush, sumptuous tale to savor.”
—Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Diamond Eye

“I flew through this fantastic page-turner about a courtesan-turned-assassin who is faced with an impossible choice: Kill the only man she loves or risk her own life and family instead. The author brings Renaissance Venice to life in all its decadent splendor, as the sharp and deadly Valentina Riccardi navigates its treacherous waters of politics and passion. The Assassin of Venice is nothing short of a breathtaking race through 16th-century Venice that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the last page.”
—Laura Morelli, Art historian and USA Today bestselling author of The Night Portrait and other books

The Assassin of Venice is a lightning-fast ride through the shadowy canals of Renaissance Venice, where secrets are traded like currency and power and passion collide. Alyssa Palombo weaves an unforgettable tale of seduction and betrayal with a tantalizing twist that will keep you up reading well past your bedtime. Packed full of vivid detail, it's a mesmerizing portrait of 16th century Venice at its most decadent and dangerous.”
—Stephanie Storey, Los Angeles Times bestselling author of Oil and Marble

“Surprising, sexy, and sharp as a dagger's blade, The Assassin of Venice plunges deep into the shadows of Venice's Council of Ten and imagines a blood-drenched world where professional courtesans did its bidding—but only on their own terms. Valentina's fearsome cleverness took my breath away.”
—Allison Epstein, author of Let the Dead Bury the Dead
Product Details
ISBN: 9781639107872
ISBN-10: 1639107878
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Publication Date: June 18th, 2024
Pages: 320
Language: English