Juliet (Paperback)

A Novel

By Anne Fortier

Ballantine Books, 9780345516114, 480pp.

Publication Date: July 26, 2011

List Price: 17.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.

September 2010 Indie Next List

“When her Aunt Rose dies, Julie Jacobs finds out that her real name is Giulietta Tolomei and that she was born in Siena, Italy. Julie journeys to Siena in search of her past, and to learn if she has a connection to the original Giulietta and her lover Romeo Marescotti, whose story was famously retold by Shakespeare. With vivid descriptions of the city and its inhabitants, Anne Fortier weaves a compelling story full of intrigue, historical references, and romance.”
— Cynthia Kuhn, Blue Willow Bookshop, Houston, TX
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Description

A sweeping novel of intrigue and identity, of love and legacy, as a young woman discovers that her own fate is irrevocably tied—for better or worse—to literature’s greatest star-crossed lovers.

Twenty-five-year-old Julie Jacobs is heartbroken over the death of her beloved aunt Rose. But the shock goes even deeper when she learns that the woman who has been like a mother to her has left her entire estate to Julie’s twin sister. The only thing Julie receives is a key—one carried by her mother on the day she herself died—to a safety-deposit box in Siena, Italy.
   
This key sends Julie on a journey that will change her life forever—a journey into the troubled past of her ancestor Giulietta Tolomei. In 1340, still reeling from the slaughter of her parents, Giulietta was smuggled into Siena, where she met a young man named Romeo. Their ill-fated love turned medieval Siena upside-down and went on to inspire generations of poets and artists, the story reaching its pinnacle in Shakespeare’s famous tragedy. 
   
But six centuries have a way of catching up to the present, and Julie gradually begins to discover that here, in this ancient city, the past and present are hard to tell apart. The deeper she delves into the history of Romeo and Giulietta, and the closer she gets to the treasure they allegedly left behind, the greater the danger surrounding her—superstitions, ancient hostilities, and personal vendettas. As Julie crosses paths with the descendants of the families involved in the unforgettable blood feud, she begins to fear that the notorious curse—“A plague on both your houses!”—is still at work, and that she is destined to be its next target. Only someone like Romeo, it seems, could save her from this dreaded fate, but his story ended long ago. Or did it?

Praise for Juliet

“One of those rare novels that have it all . . . I was swept away”—Sara Gruen, author of Water for Elephants

Juliet leads us on a thrilling treasure hunt through present-day Italy that makes the classic tragedy itself spellbinding all over again.”Elle

“Boldly imagined, brilliantly plotted, beautifully described, Juliet will carry you spellbound until the gripping end.”—Susan Vreeland, author of Clara and Mr. Tiffany

“The Shakespearean scholarship on display is both impressive and well-handled.”The Washington Post


About the Author

Anne Fortier grew up in Denmark and emigrated to the United States in 2002 to work in film. She co-produced the Emmy-winning documentary Fire and Ice: The Winter War of Finland and Russia and holds a Ph.D. in the history of ideas from Aarhus University, Denmark. The story of Juliet was inspired by Anne Fortier’s mother, who always considered Verona her true home . . . until she discovered Siena.


From the Hardcover edition.


Praise For Juliet: A Novel

“One of those rare novels that have it all . . . I was swept away.”—Sara Gruen

Juliet leads us on a thrilling treasure hunt through present-day Italy that makes the classic tragedy itself spellbinding all over again.”—Elle

“Boldly imagined, brilliantly plotted, beautifully described, Juliet will carry you spellbound until the gripping end.”—Susan Vreeland, author of Clara and Mr. Tiffany
 
“The Shakespearean scholarship on display is both impressive and well-handled.”—The Washington Post

“Stunning . . . This storyteller dazzles. . . . The kind of elegant, witty writing that has made Philippa Gregory a superstar of historical romance.”—The Dallas Morning News
 
“Reads like a Da Vinci Code for the smart modern woman.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)