Orphaned in Florence, Lucy Raymond takes the only employment she can find, that of a castrato assistant to an art and antiquities dealer. But as she grows into womanhood, her masquerade chafes, for it allows none of the romance she craves.
In her loneliness she often visits the Piazza della Signoria, where she gazes at the magnificent sculptures and dreams impossible dreams. Until one day, when she is overcome by loneliness and the oppressive heat, she faints at the feet of an enormous sculpture, only to wake in the arms of its living embodiment.
Allowing herself to be seduced is the last thing Lucy should do. But Vido is warm and vital and the living image of David, so how can she resist?
Florentine Enchantment by Judith B Glad offers the dilemma of a well-educated woman in times of old, in Italy. The main character is a strong, intelligent woman, but desires not learning, but love. We have her story as if spoken directly from her mouth.
It is an interesting approach, although some is merely setting the stage for the story, and is somewhat slow going. We need to wade through long explanations before we get so much as a conversation.
The setting is utterly magnificent; from the scents of olive trees to the sculptures in the square, this writer puts us in the scene: the city of Firenze, and impact of the sensual sculptures. Desire is inflamed as if from sculpture, and it is then that our heroine meets Vido. Is it love? It seems something else… and this story moves along quickly from that point on.
Intriguing? Yes. And we can put the belief issue on hold. Florentine Enchantment is original; in fact, wonderfully creative, and imaginative. The whole point of the story, however, seems to be to get to a particular scene; and those who read hot specifically for the heat might enjoy this.