The Many Lives of a Florentine Palazzo

Reviews

Legal support for Creatives, Artists, and Innovators.

Reviews

 

Literary Review, April 2019  “The façade of the Palazzo Rucellai in Florence is a hidden Renaissance gem. Embedded in a maze of small streets, it’s hard to get a proper perspective; those who make the effort usually know their architectural history…In essence, the story of the palace is the story of the Renaissance. So imagine her excitement when the young American art historian Allison Levy, on a year away from the academic hamster wheel, managed to rent a tiny apartment behind the palazzo’s closed doors. House of Secrets is the fruit of her academic gap year. She’s keen to stress the originality of her approach. Citing ‘the performativity of architecture’, she views ‘the built structure as a sentient being with a soul … a living and breathing character … it bleeds … it blushes and weeps; it shudders at the idea of anyone passing through its portal’. This ‘character driven historical narrative of the Palazzo Rucellai’ is, she tells us, ‘the first of its kind’, with herself as a player in the story, adding her own layer of history to the palimpsest beneath…Most of the heirlooms belonging to families like the Rucellai have long gone, but America’s admiration of and commitment to Florence has continued unstinting. Without the armies of brilliant scholars from America, Renaissance history would be so much poorer.”Sarah Dunant

 

Wisconsin Bookwatch, March 2019, Reviewer’s Choice. “A unique and riveting read from cover to cover, House of Secretsis a deftly written extraordinary story that will prove to be an immediate and enduringly popular addition to community library collections. This is the kind of extended yet personally resonating history that will linger in the mind and memory of the reader long after the book itself has been finished and set back upon the shelf.”