In May of 1608, the Duke of Mantua will throw the most spectacular wedding extravaganza in history. But it will all be ruined unless twelve-year-old Franni can keep a very big secret.
"Franni and the Duke," a middle-grade novel, sets a fictional mystery against a specific historical backdrop. It takes place during rehearsals for Arianna, an opera by the great composer Claudio Monteverdi. When Franni and her older sister Alli run away to Mantua, they both find work in Monteverdi's company. A messenger from the north announces that the next duke of the town of Bergamo is missing, and he may well be in Mantua. Alli notices that Luca, a singer she's in love with, fits the missing Duke's description. Although Franni thinks Luca is a pompous idiot, she promises for Alli's sake to keep Luca's secret safe and protect him from bounty hunters and Bergamo's rival family. She does this with the help of the company's set designer, a worldly wise and world-weary dwarf named Edgardo, who is not exactly what he seems.
|Publisher:||Sunbury Press, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||5.51(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.36(d)|
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Anne E. Johnson's , Franni and the Duke is a novel for all ages and music lovers especially those who enjoy opera! Those who enjoy historical fiction would also enjoy this novel. It transports you back into the time when Italy was under the influence by the wealthiest noble family, the Medici's and during the premiere of composer Claudio Monteverdi's opera Arianna. The main character Franni, a brave, smart and caring 12 year old girl moves to Mantua from Verona , Italy with her boy crazed older sister Ali to start a new life and escape their cruel step father. Franni befriends a witty dwarf named Edgardo who has a great sense of humor and kind heart despite the constant teasing he gets every day from his fellow stage crew members. Edgardo has some secrets of his own that he never wants anyone to know, however Franni courageously helps him live the life he was born to live. I could not put this book down... it is full of adventure, suspense and good laughs! What an exciting story that is full of so much beautiful, and powerful imagery you feel as though you are living right in Mantua!