(From the publisher):
It was the beginning of the age of revolution. It was the beginning of the age of exaggeration...
Naples, 1772. The second city of Europe, gorgeous, turbulent, and presided over by its renowned volcano, Vesuvius, constantly threatening eruptions that simultaneously fascinate and terrify. An English nobleman, the British ambassador to the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, returns to his adoptive city with his wife. The Cavaliere, as he is known to all, is a collector of antiquities, of art, of people, with a connoisseur's avid but dispassionate temperament. Then his wife dies, and the Cavaliere knows deep feeling for the first time. And when his nephew's former mistress comes into his life, he is swept away by overwhelming passion. Ravishingly beautiful and supremely intelligent, though uneducated, the young becomes, under her mentor's loving eye, a remarkable citizen of the world and, to his family's consternation, his wife. A favorite of the Neapolitan queen, who is the sister of Marie Antoinette, she is the love of her husband's life. But it is not until the young British admiral, the greatest hero of the time, arrives in Naples that the Cavaliere's wife knows a correspondingly powerful emotion. Based on the lives of Sir William Hamilaton, his celebrated wife, Emma, and Lord Nelson, and peopled with many of the great figures of the day, The Volcano Lover is about revolution, the fate of nature, the condition of women, operatic emotions and stories from "Don Giovanni" to Tosa, art and the collector's obsessions, and, above all, love.
Original title: The Volcano Lover
Genre: Fiction→ Historical→ European→ Italy