ARA Review by Tapley-Olson of The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci

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ARA Review by Tapley-Olson of The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci

Post by Tapley-Olson »

[Following is an ARA Review of the book, The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci.]
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4 out of 5 stars
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Saved by the Past

The Girl Who Knew Da Vinci is a trip: through time, through Tuscany, through reincarnation and through enough good food descriptions to make your mouth water while reading! It crosses several genres: combining Romance, Science Fiction, Detective story Historical Fiction, and a is foodies delight.

A young woman, Angela, realizes that her dream internship has become a nightmare of fending off advances from her boss. But another nightmare is also building as she finds herself overwhelmed by dreams she experiences in which she seems to be living in the art world of 500 years ago. In this state she is a good friend of Leonardo Da Vinci, and learns a secret that the rest of the world doesn't know about. As her dreams become more trance-like, she becomes increasingly vulnerable to those who want to use her for their own nefarious purposes. Then, in one of her trances, she is noticed by a handsome young art detective, Alex, who is determined to protect her.

Each time she wakes from a trance and interaction with persons from the past who at first have no meaning for her, she becomes more fearful and confused. She begins to question what she has believed about reincarnation, and has fears that others may be taking over her identity. Then what seem to be the ghosts of those she observed in the past begin speaking to her. They inform her that she alone can break the very tragic pattern of the past and restore a masterpiece of great value to the world. But she also learns that others are determined to obtain what she seeks, and will stop at nothing to get it.

Alex has been aware of these unscrupulous characters and tries to help her elude them, not suspecting how intertwined his life is with Angela's. Although she and Alex come from opposite backgrounds and she initially resists him, his promises to keep her safe begin to win her over. Still, she distrusts his love for her and makes assumptions about his lifestyle. Both of them discover they've kept secrets from each other. The tension builds, from the increasing depth of Angela's trances, from awareness of the evil of those pursuing her, and from the sexual tension between her and Alex.

One might suspect that continuity could be lost as characters travel through time, but episodes from the past are woven skillfully into the story so the reader easily travels between past and present. Belief has to be suspended as ghosts appear and begin to talk to characters in the present day, and even more so when they begin influencing them.

I would give the book 4 out of 5 stars. The story is original and intriguing, and the initial time switches keep you guessing. Once Angela overcomes her distrust of Alex and gives in to her desire for him, the passionate scenes, however, become more "stock" romance and take away from the uniqueness of the rest of the story line. The sexual tension builds over time, but when finally released almost consumes the story. There could be more emphasis on the reincarnation aspect that is presented.

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