Monday, August 7, 2017

Review & Giveaway: Casanova's Secret Wife by Barbara Lynn-Davis

Set in eighteenth-century Venice and based on an actual account by Giacomo Casanova—here is a lush tale of desire and risk. 

Caterina Capreta was an innocent girl of fourteen when she caught the attention of the world’s most infamous chronicler of seduction: Giacomo Casanova. 

Intoxicated by a fierce love, she wed Casanova in secret. But his shocking betrayal inspired her to commit an act that would mark her forever … 

Now twenty years later on the island of Murano, the woman in possession of Caterina’s most devastating secret has appeared with a request she cannot refuse: to take in a noble-born girl whose scandalous love affair resembles her own. But the girl’s presence stirs up unwelcome memories of Caterina’s turbulent past. 

Tested like never before, she reveals the story of the man she will never forget. Bringing to life a fascinating chapter in the history of Venice, Casanova’s Secret Wife is a tour de force that charts one woman’s journey through love and loss to redemption.

Publication Date: July 25, 2017
Kensington Books
eBook & Paperback; 304 Pages
Genre: Fiction/Historical/Biographical

I am a sucker when it comes to books taking place in Italy, rich in culture and history, it's my ultimate vacation destination.  I have been to a couple cities there but never Venice or the island of Murano. As my blog subtitle states 'reading gives you someplace to go when you have to stay where you are', which is exactly what Casanova's Secret Wife did.  It transported me to the eighteenth century with lush descriptive settings, from gondola rides to food to the convent.

I am familiar with the name Casanova but know nothing more about this character, to really show my ignorance I wasn't even sure this was a real person or just a myth.  Which was one of my main reasons for wanting to read this one.  While I was immediately drawn into this story I did struggle with Caterina's age, I realize that girls matured early back in the day but my feeling throughout this book was that she was older and wiser than 14 years, though some of her actions spoke clearly of someone lacking maturity.  

The plot was interesting and proves Casanova's  reputation, the author had wonderful author's notes to show her research and how true she stayed to the facts, but it's fiction and she filled in the gaps quite nicely.  This story is told from Caterina's initial meeting and then 20 years later as she recounts what took place. I loved that the author used some of Casonava's actual writings here and gave more info about his life.

Casanova's Secret Wife is a story of first love, loss and redemption, it's one I enjoyed reading and has me keeping my eye open for more by this author.

Thanks to HFVBT for the invite to be part of this tour and a print copy in exchange for honest review.

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Barbara Lynn-Davis graduated from Brown University with a degree in art history. She then worked at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice and later spent a year there while completing her Ph.D. in Renaissance art at Princeton University. She currently teaches art history and writing at Wellesley College, and lives outside Boston with her family.

For more information please visit Barbara Lynn-Davis' website.

You can also connect with her on Facebook and Goodreads.


During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a paperback copy of Casanova's Secret Wife!

To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on July 28th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to residents in the US & Canada only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

  Casanova's Secret Wife


  1. This sounds like a fascinating story. I would really enjoy reading this. Thanks for the post and giveaway chance.
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