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Antonio Vivaldi in Venice Canaletto in Venice Goldoni in Venice Links
Death of a Daughter of Venice. 1739 The Venice of Vivaldi, Canaletto and Goldoni. Harry Brierfield, a young Englishman of limited means is attempting to establish himself painting cityscapes for his compatriots doing the Grand Tour. Things aren't going well, and soon they’re going disastrously, when he finds a body in a canal. The nuns who run the orphanage where the dead girl lived are naturally suspicious of his involvement, but Paola, a young musician and the dead girl’s best friend, is more ready to believe in his innocence, and furthermore co-opt his assistance in discovering who did kill Sonia. But can they do it, given that the nuns are now employing Harry to copy the paintings in the soon to be demolished chapel, and Paola has a busy schedule of masses and concerts to perform, not to mention the fact that Don Antonio Vivaldi is composing an opera for the whole orphanage to present to visiting Royalty?
A reviewer on Smashwords said: ....... Read it and you'll see and hear (and smell) early 18th century Venice and fall into the lives of orphaned or abandoned girls who become musicians trained by a genius named Vivaldi. I don't know if the details in this novel are fact or Sturge's imagination, but I don't care -- that Venice couldn't be anything else. There's a mystery, too, in which I was hooked when I read the first paragraph. .....
Abandoned children in Venice at this time were considered to be daughters, or sons, of the City, hence the girls were known as "Daughters of Venice". As the state was caring for them, they were expected to earn their keep and support the orphanage in which they were placed.
In the review quoted above the writer wonders whether the details are fact. Well, most of them are! I did a lot of research to ensure my descriptions of Venice and the life of the orphanage are as accurate as I could make them. But of course I used my imagination as well.Take the chapel where Harry is employed to copy the paintings.The chapel really was due to be demolished to make way for a larger one which stands on the site today. I don't know whether there were paintings on the walls of the old one, I couldn't find any record of what it looked like, but almost certainly there would have been. As far as I know nobody made any record of them, but surely the nuns and the orphans would have had some affection for them, and would have liked to have some drawings to remind them of what they had looked like.
Death of a Daughter of Venice is available in print from Amazon This is the UK Amazon site but it is available from other Amazon sites too.
Death of a Daughter of Venice is also available as an e-book from Smashwords in a wide variety of formats for a range of e-readers, including Kobo, Kindle, tablets etc. It is also available for Kindle from Amazon This is the UK Amazon site but it is available from other Amazon sites too.
The sign on the new church built to replace that in the story
|Music used by the Coro (choir) of the Pieta.|
My next novel, A Storm in Summer, set at the end of the English Civil War, is now available
©2014 Rosemary Sturge