The Gondola Maker

The Gondola Maker - Laura Morelli

From the author of Made in Italy comes a tale of artisanal tradition and family bonds set in one of the world's most magnificent settings: Renaissance Venice.

When Luca Vianello, the heir to a renowned gondola-making enterprise, experiences an unexpected tragedy in the boatyard, he believes that his destiny lies elsewhere. Soon he finds himself drawn to restore an antique gondola with the dream of taking a girl for a ride. Lovers of historical fiction will appreciate the authentic details of gondola craftsmanship, along with an intimate first-person narrative set against the richly textured backdrop of 16th-century Venice.




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About the author

Laura Morelli earned a Ph.D. in art history from Yale University, where she was a Bass Writing Fellow and an Andrew W. Mellon Doctoral Fellow. She has taught college art history in the U.S. and at Trinity College in Rome. She is the creator of the authentic guidebook series that includes Made in Italy, Made in France, and Made in the Southwest, published by Rizzoli. Laura is a frequent contributor to National Geographic Traveler and other national magazines and newspapers. A native of coastal Georgia, she is married and is busy raising four children. The Gondola Maker is her first work of fiction.


My Review

From the very first page, Laura Morelli sucks the reader into 16th century Venice and the world of the gondola makers. I enjoyed the historical aspect, which is very well researched and was pleased to find that it enhanced rather than detracted from the storyline.

It is an unusual book sent in an unusual time and for me it was a pleasure to read historical fiction with a difference. Laura Morelli’s style is so evocative that you can breathe in the fumes from the varnish, smell the canals and feel the touch of the wood under your hand. Set against this backdrop is the story of Luca, who through a tragic accident loses all that he has known and has to seek his own fortune.

The story and characters are well developed and set against such a backdrop this is an incredible achievement for a first novel. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I don’t say that lightly.





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Laura Morelli | Reply 15.05.2014 16.50

Many thanks for this great review! --Laura Morelli

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Latest comments

Yesterday | 22:25

Wonderful review, for a wonderful lady and Author.

Yesterday | 20:12

Great review for an equally great book by Mary

Yesterday | 18:26

When reading all the reviews I just can not wait to read this for myself. I adore stories of hardship and how they unfold and hopefully have a good ending.

Yesterday | 17:22

Another great review for a brilliant author.

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