Shades of Brilliance: The Master’s Protege Trilogy Book 1


During the Renaissance in Italy, Celeste Gabriele will do anything to help her family. Her mother died and her father is a drunk who doesn’t care for his children and has ruined their good name. Her name gets her a position as a nanny. Her charge takes painting lessons from Luciano Vincente. She listens during the lessons and draws in rare moments of solitude. When Luciano Vincente discovers a drawing, he is completely enthralled by her talent and takes her on as a secret pupil. It is dangerous because she is a woman, and such dreams are impossible. As time passes, he sees more than her brilliance and falls in love with her. Even in love, he is still determined to educate her and make her one of the best artists the world has ever seen.

A “rags-to-riches” story meets the Renaissance! The story is broken up into three different parts, slowly showing the progression of Celeste’s journey as an artist. Though the story moves at a fairly slow pace, the detail is absolutely splendid. One of the best parts is seeing actual historical characters come to life, like Lorenzo de’Medici. Despite these fascinating minor characters, the main characters fall a little flat. It is difficult to see what Celeste even sees in Luciano. He is rather dull and only thinks of himself. Even worse, he often takes claim to her rise in society and holds it over her head-and on top of that, she lets him. Her passion for painting is inspiring! Fans of the Renaissance era will be carried away to a time of passion and art.

Amanda Hupe