Alyssa Palombo is a relatively new author on the historical fiction scene. But being that it is my favorite genre to read, I have had the pleasure of reading Palombo’s two novels, both of which do a spectacular job of bringing interesting, and somewhat unknown, parts of history to life.
All things considered, I think it’s time you get more familiar with the promising writer.
Who is Alyssa Palombo?
Palombo graduated from Canisius College, where she majored in English and creative writing while completing a minor in music as well. In addition to being dedicated to both reading and writing, she is also an avid lover of music, enjoys traveling and has visited the locations that are featured in both of her published novels. She currently resides in Buffalo, New York, and is at work on her third novel.
What has she written so far?
Palombo currently has two historical fiction novels published, The Violinist of Venice: A Story of Vivaldi and The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence: A Story of Botticelli. Both of these novels are told from the perspective of passionate and complex women who form a deep relationship with legendary artists. They also happen to take place in the historically rich country of Italy.
For example, in The Violinist of Venice, our fictional narrator Adriana d’Amato and famous composer Antonio Vivaldi find themselves in a forbidden affair. In the novel, readers follow the rocky path Adriana must tread as she attempts to keep her reputation pristine while continuing her affair with a man who is off-limits. You will recognize Palombo’s love for music in this story, as it is on full display and makes references to some of Vivaldi’s famous works.
On the other hand, The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence is the tale of real-life historical figure Simonetta Carranteo and how she became the muse of acclaimed painter, Sandro Botticelli. Become engrossed in Simonetta’s transition in not only being a wife but also being a member of the high-society in Florence. Taking place in the Renaissance era, an adoration of art and literature plays a large role in the lives of the characters featured.
Why should you read her?
Personally, I enjoyed both of Palombo’s current novels because she does a fantastic job of seamlessly weaving fact and fiction together. You can tell through just her writing alone that there is passion behind all the well-researched details she implements into her stories. Not to mention, I’ve realized that I always learn so much more about history when reading her books.
I knew next to nothing about Vivaldi before reading The Violinist of Venice, and only vaguely heard of Botticelli (and definitely nothing about Simonetta Carranteo) until I read The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence. Not only will you be entertained by the dazzling settings, engrossing plot lines, and complex characters, but I can promise you will learn something of worth while reading Palombo’s books.
If you don’t know which of her charming novels to pick up first, I would highly recommend reading The Violinist of Venice first. It’s a personal favorite of mines from her and is one of my favorite historical fiction novels of all-time. Still, you must be sure to pick up The Most Beautiful Florence soon afterward.