The Serpent and the Pearl

By Kate Quinn,

Book cover of The Serpent and the Pearl

Book description

A gripping novel about history’s most infamous family—The Borgias—and an innocent girl pulled into their treacherous rise to power, from the New York Times bestselling author of The Alice Network and The Diamond Eye.

Rome, 1492. The Holy City is drenched with blood and teeming with secrets. A pope lies…

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Why read it?

1 author picked The Serpent and the Pearl as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

While this novel moves effortlessly between three narrators, I loved that one of them is plucked straight from the dusty pages of history. While Lucrezia Borgia typically gets plenty of press, her contemporary Giulia Farnese was the beautiful young woman who didn’t have a choice in becoming the mistress of Cardinal Borgia, who became Pope Alexander VI. Here we see her learning to wade through Italian politics at the height of Borgia treachery.

From Stephanie's list on forgotten women in history.

The Model Spy: Based on the True Story of Toto Koopman’s World War II Ventures

By Maryka Biaggio,

Book cover of The Model Spy: Based on the True Story of Toto Koopman’s World War II Ventures

Maryka Biaggio Author Of The Model Spy: Based on the True Story of Toto Koopman’s World War II Ventures

New book alert!

Who am I?

Author Historical fiction author Lover of hidden stories Research nerd Opera fanatic

Maryka's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

The Model Spy is based on the true story of Toto Koopman, who spied for the Allies and Italian Resistance during World War II.

Largely unknown today, Toto was arguably the first woman to spy for the British Intelligence Service. Operating in the hotbed of Mussolini's Italy, she courted danger every step of the way. As the war entered its final stages, she faced off against the most brutal of forces—Germany's Intelligence Service, the Abwehr.

The Model Spy: Based on the True Story of Toto Koopman’s World War II Ventures

By Maryka Biaggio,

What is this book about?

Celebrated model Toto Koopman had beauty, brains, and fame. Born to a Dutch father and Indonesian mother, she took up the life of a bon vivant in 1920s Paris and modeled for Vogue magazine and Coco Chanel. But modeling didn’t satisfy her. Fluent in six languages, she was adventurous and fascinated by world politics.

In London she attracted the attention of Lord Beaverbrook, the William Randolph Hearst of England. She soon became his confidante, companion, and translator, traversing the Continent and finding herself caught in the winds of impending war. Beaverbrook introduced her to influential people, including a director at…


Want books like The Serpent and the Pearl?

Our community of 10,000+ authors has personally recommended 58 books like The Serpent and the Pearl.

Browse books like The Serpent and the Pearl

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in nobility, Rome, and romantic love?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about nobility, Rome, and romantic love.

Nobility Explore 81 books about nobility
Rome Explore 313 books about Rome
Romantic Love Explore 797 books about romantic love