Backlist blast – City of masks

About the meme:

Blacklist blast is created by Milana from A couple reads and Flavia from Flavia the bibliophile! It is meant to talk about blacklist books, books that were published 6 months ago or earlier. This to remind ourselves why we wanted to read the book in the first place, or to share our feelings towards an old(er) favourite. 


Title: City of Masks
Author:  Mary Hoffman
Genre: fantasy, historical, YA.
Release day: January 1st 2002



Lucien is seriously ill but his life is transformed when an old Italian notebook gives him the power to become a stravagante, a time traveller with access to 16th century Italy. He wakes up in Bellezza (Venice) during carnival time and meets Arianna, a girl his own age who is disguised as a boy in the hope of being selected as one of the Duchessa’s mandoliers. Arianna gives Lucien her boy’s clothing and he is selected as a mandolier himself, becoming a friend of fellow-stravagante Rodolfo, the Duchessa’s lover, and saving the Duchessa’s life when she is threatened by an assassin hired by the powerful di Chimici family. For state occasions the Duchessa uses her maid Giuliana as a body-double but Guiliana commits the fatal mistake of revealing the secret to her fiance Enrico and a sequence of devastating consequences unravels. Meanwhile Lucien has met the original stravagante, the Elizabethan alchemist William Dethridge, and he begins to understand that he may be called to follow in his footsteps.


Why I choose this book:

It’s been YEARS since I’ve read this book and the rest of the series. The mean thing I remember about this book/series is that I absolutely loved it. I read them so quickly, and I could not buy the next book quick enough!

When I think back to it I think this is a really original series, and really well expanded. But as I said I have no idea if I would still think that haha.



Goodreads, amazon


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What is a backlist book you think more people should read?

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