• Sign In / Register
  • Help
  • Basket0
Mona Lisa: A Life Discovered (Hardback)
  • Mona Lisa: A Life Discovered (Hardback)
zoom

Mona Lisa: A Life Discovered (Hardback)

(author)
£18.99
Hardback 336 Pages / Published: 14/08/2014
  • In stock online

Usually despatched within 24 hours

  • This item has been added to your basket
Your local Waterstones may have stock of this item. Please check by using Click & Collect
A genius immortalized her. A French king paid a fortune for her. An emperor coveted her. Every year more than 9 million visitors trek to view her portrait in the Louvre. Yet while everyone recognizes her smile, hardly anyone knows her story. Mona Lisa: A Life Discovered, a blend of biography, history, and memoir, truly is a book of discovery-about the world's most recognized face, most revered artist, and most praised and parodied painting. Who was she, this ordinary woman who rose to such extraordinary fame? Why did the most renowned painter of her time choose her as his model? What became of her? And why does her smile enchant us still?

Lisa Gherardini (1479-1542) was a quintessential woman of her times, caught in a whirl of political upheavals, family dramas, and public scandals. Her life spanned the most tumultuous chapters in the history of Florence-and of the greatest artistic outpouring the world has ever seen. Her story creates an extraordinary tapestry of Renaissance Florence, with larger-than-legend figures such as Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Machiavelli.

In Mona Lisa: A Life Discovered, Dianne Hales takes readers with her to meet Lisa's descendants; uncover her family's long and colourful history; and explore the neighbourhoods where she lived as a girl, a wife, and a mother.

Publisher: Simon & Schuster
ISBN: 9781451658965
Number of pages: 336
Weight: 583 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 30 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"I'm enthralled by every page of Dianne Hales's Mona Lisa. The mysteries of the painting remain, but through Hales's portraits of the people and her skilled rendering of customs, politics, and daily habits of the time, you come to know the painting in profound new ways. The great pleasure of her prose brings Lisa Gheradini's world to vivid life. Anyone who loves art and Italy-and who doesn't-will adore this book." -- Frances Mayes, author of Under the Tuscan Sun and Under Magnolia
"This is cultural history that reads like a detective novel as Dianne Hales tracks down the real woman behind one of the world's most famous and enigmatic faces. Expertly sleuthing her way through the treasure troves of archives and palazzos, she offers her own fascinating portrait not just of Lisa Gherardini but also of the vibrant Renaissance world that nurtured both Lisa and Leonardo's painting." -- Ross King, author of Brunelleschi's Dome and Leonardo and The Last Supper
"Biography, history, and memoir are woven together in Hales' lyrical biography of Lisa Gherardini...her quest endows human subjectivity to one of art history's greatest icons." * Booklist *
"Engaging...a rich tapestry of family life, mercantile society, politics, and artistic development...enthralling." * BookPage *
"Veteran journalist Dianne Hales shares with us the tumultuous lives of both Gherardini and the artist who immortalized her, and brings us along on the travels of a work of art for which love and esteem have increased markedly over the centuries." * New York Post *
"A readable and affectionate my-search-for-story for art lovers and anyone interested in glorious and gory Florence in the 15th- to 16th centuries, and in the divine Leonardo in particular...Hales' assiduous research has made it possible for us to know Mona Lisa just a bit, enough to wonder if this otherwise ordinary Florentine housewife could ever have imagined her portrait enchanting millions for centuries." * USAToday.com *
"Now, thanks to meticulous research, Hales' biography-memoir-history lesson brings to life Lisa Gherardini (1479-1542), the unforgettable face behind Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa." * Fort Worth Star-Telegram *
"Combining history, whimsical biography, personal travelogue, and love letter to Italy...an accessible, vivid examination of women's lives in Florence of the period....Entertaining." * Publishers Weekly *
"It's a joy to follow Dianne Hales' fascinating exploration into what's behind the world's most famous smile-an enchanting mix of fascinating history and passion-filled memoir." -- Susan Van Allen, author of 100 Places in Italy Every Woman Should Go

You may also be interested in...

Escaping Hitler
Added to basket
£8.99
Paperback
France
Added to basket
£25.00   £20.00
Hardback
Passchendaele
Added to basket
£9.99
Paperback
The Strange Death of Europe
Added to basket
£9.99   £7.99
Paperback
Chernobyl
Added to basket
£20.00   £16.99
Hardback
The Shortest History of Europe
Added to basket
£8.99   £6.99
Paperback
Les Parisiennes
Added to basket
£9.99
Paperback
Istanbul
Added to basket
£10.99   £9.99
Paperback
The Archipelago
Added to basket
£25.00   £20.00
Hardback
Travellers in the Third Reich
Added to basket
£10.99   £8.99
Paperback
Darkest Hour
Added to basket
£8.99   £6.99
Paperback
Homage to Catalonia
Added to basket
£9.99   £7.99
Paperback
The Strange Death of Europe
Added to basket
£18.99   £15.99
Hardback
The Diary of a Young Girl
Added to basket
£8.99   £6.99
Paperback
The French Revolution and What Went Wrong
Added to basket
The Shortest History of Germany
Added to basket
£8.99   £6.99
Paperback

Reviews

Please sign in to write a review

Your review has been submitted successfully.