The name Borgia is synonymous with the corruption, nepotism, and greed that were rife in Renaissance Italy. The powerful, voracious Rodrigo Borgia, better known to history as Pope Alexander VI, was the central figure of the dynasty. Two of his seven papal offspring also rose to power and fame - his daughter Lucrezia and her brother Cesare, who murdered Lucrezia's husband and served as the model for Machiavelli's The Prince.
The Borgias were notorious for seizing power, wealth, land, and titles through bribery, marriage, and murder. The story of the family's dramatic rise from its Spanish roots to the highest position in Italian society is an absorbing tale.
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Covers the bases, but falls a little flat.
After watching the Showtime series, I wanted a little real history on the Borgia family and this did provide it. In fact, I was surprised at the liberties taken by the TV series after listening to this historical account. I am glad I took the time to research their recorded history a little.
The actual substance is a little dry, which is amazing considering the subject matter. This is a traditional "this happened and then this happened and then this" type of narrative, amounting to a compilation of information from various sources without any gloss. I guess that is a good counterpoint to the TV series, which went too far in the other direction and changed a lot of the history behind this colorful family. I don't know that I would change that about this book, its just different from other representations I have encountered.
I would say that this audiobook is worth the listening time.
- Chap Walker
No starting point