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Publisher's Summary

An exciting, dual-timeline historical novel about the creation of one of Leonardo da Vinci's most famous paintings, Portrait of a Lady with an Ermine, and the woman who fought to save it from Nazi destruction during World War II.

Milan, 1492: When a 16-year-old beauty becomes the mistress of the Duke of Milan, she must fight for her place in the palace - and against those who want her out. Soon, she finds herself sitting before Leonardo da Vinci, who wants to ensure his own place in the ducal palace by painting his most ambitious portrait to date.

Munich, World War II: After a modest conservator unwittingly places a priceless Italian Renaissance portrait into the hands of a high-ranking Nazi leader, she risks her life to recover it, working with an American soldier, part of the famed Monuments Men team, to get it back. Two women, separated by 500 years, are swept up in the tide of history as one painting stands at the center of their quests for their own destinies.

©2020 Laura Morelli (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Night Portrait

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Narration almost a deal breaker

I like the idea of the history of this Masterpiece. The dramatic back and forth between threads of the story not to mention time period is ham handed. The narration must be a computer. Do you think?

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Marvelous masterpiece

This is a well performed and well written book regarding the history of DaVinci and one of his much loved portraits. As well as WWII's the Monument's Men of which is just becoming more widely known. The story is also weaved through the eyes of a young woman trying to protect and survive the only way she can in a world gone crazy in war torn Germany and Poland.

Laura Morelli does a fantastic job weaving the lines of history through one famous portrait and making the reader/listener feel the emotions of each of her characters. A wonderful read for anyone interested in reading a marvelous story!

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The shifting point of views between the allied forces and the Germans as well as the interspersing of time periods

I loved the themes or art and life woven into a tale of multiple characters lives ranging from an American soldier and a German art restorer during WWII. The story of Cecilia and the Duke of Milan ran parallel and reflects the timelessness of love and art. All the characters were easy to like and inspiring in their struggles.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Beautifully written novel

The only thing that endures is love and art...if a piece of art has ever viscerally moved you, as the Lady with a Ermine affects me, you will thoroughly enjoy this book. I now feel as if I know Cecilia and what drew Leonardo to depict her likeness in such beauty...3 timelines converge to save the painting and restore her to her rightful place for thousands to appreciate her in centuries to come.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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The Night Portrait

I wasn’t so sure at the beginning of the book if I would enjoy it. I ended up loving it. I learned a lot about art and found myself looking up art pieces and artist while listening to this book. Great story line. Grateful for the men and women who risked their lives so we could all enjoy the beauty and history that these paintings have to offer.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Loved the beauty of this book

Against the backdrop of Nazi Germany and 15th century Italy, two remarkable women emerge to show us why art matters so deeply to our souls. Researched, crafted and woven together this is a gorgeous book. Be patient with it because like a beautiful work of art, it takes time to reveal and capture the reader.

2 people found this helpful

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Interesting and Informative Read

I enjoyed this story and how the author wove in the possible origins of the Lady with Ermine painting into to story about the Nazis' grab of priceless artwork during WWII. I knew about Hitler's desire to collect art but had no idea of the extent of it

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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great insight into person behind portrait

clever mix of generational links and fun to learn about monument men and women. Writing simple.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Interesting

This book is interesting because it tells a story from many different angles. I think the characters are developed and likable mainly. No spoilers

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Gripping

A tale that needed to be told
I was glad that it had a happy ending for some.

1 person found this helpful