Book Review: The Midwife of Venice by Roberta Rich

Hannah Levi is famed throughout Venice for her skills as a midwife but, as a Jew, the law forbids her from attending a Christian woman.
However, when the Conte di Padovani appears at her door in the dead of night to demand her services, Hannah's compassion is sorely tested. And with the handsome reward he is offering, she could ransom back her imprisoned husband.
But if she fails in her endeavours to save mother and child, will she be able to save herself, let alone her husband?
The Midwife of Venice is an extremely interesting historical read. The book moves between two main stories, Hannah's in 16th Century Venice and her husband Isaac's in Malta where he is serving as a slave.
Hannah risks everything to earn Isaac's ransom money; putting her own life and those around her in extreme danger. She attends the Christian birth of the Conte's wife, two women separated by class and religion but thrown together in the traumatic and wonderful event of childbirth. However the link between these two women does not end there but Hannah could not have had any idea of how events would unfold.
Roberta Rich's writing is extremely rich in detail, I loved her detailed descriptions of both Venice and Malta. Having spent much of my childhood in Malta I can say that she got the landscape spot on. She brought the two plot lines together seamlessly whilst keeping a really good pace throughout.
I would highly recommend this book for its vivid imagery and enthralling plot.

Dot Scribbles Rating 4/5

Many thanks to Ebury press for sending me a copy of the book to review, it is out now.


Jean Bull said...

Thanks Dot, I've already got this book to read on my holiday in Venice. I'm glad you liked it. I haven't been to Malta yet, but I'd like to! I enjoyed The Information Officer by Mark Mills which is set there, and also The Savage Garden, set in Tuscany.

Dot said...

Jean- Ooh have a lovely time in Venice, I am very jealous!

One More Page said...

I enjoyed this one too - it was full of action which kept me gripped!

Jo said...

Not sure about this one. Although I am back into my historical fiction at the moment.

Thanks for the review. I loved Malta when I went on holiday a few years ago. Would love to go again.

jessicabookworm said...

I would to love to go to Venice! Will have to make do with reading about it for now though :-)

Dot said...

One More Page- It was great wasn't it, I haven't read any historical fiction for ages.

Jo- It's one of my favourite places, full of childhood memories!

Jessica- me too, it's on my wish list!

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