I wanted to like this book. I really did. It's not like I hated it, because I didn't, but I really didn't enjoy it as much as I wanted to. It centers around the Borgias! How could any book centered around them be a bad book?! Well, I'll tell you.
The main character is Sancha of Aragon, a Neapolitan princess who is eventually wed to the youngest Borgia son, Jofre. The book follows Sancha from her childhood growing up in Naples to her entry into Rome and the Royal Papal family. We see Lucrezia, Cesare, and Juan Borgia; and of course, Rodrigo Borgia, the Pope himself, makes appearances throughout the novel. My biggest problem with this book wasn't the character list (although Kalogridis switches between titles without a thought to the reader, I found myself more often then not completely lost), it was that I was TOLD of great passion without ever feeling it. I should have cried throughout this novel, I should have been mortified through other parts. Instead, I felt like a complete outsider to the world, simply being told what was happening instead of being shown. My other big complaint was that I never knew how old the characters were after their initial introduction into the novel. Jofre was wed when he was 11? 12? I don't remember. But by the end of the book I still see him as a very young child even though several years had passed. Also, foreshadowing can be great, but don't hit me over the head with it. Not every event that happens needs to be foreshadowed.
Things I did like about the book: I learned a bit more about the Borgias. I learned some more rumors that surround the family. But I can't say much else about it.
All in all, I give this book three stars. It may be for some, but I personally don't like to be told how strong a woman is. SHOW IT TO ME. Sancha wasn't a believable character to me. You can find it on Amazon or your local bookstore.