Alessandra is desperate to escape.
Desperate to escape her stepmother, who's locked her away for a year; to escape the cloister that awaits her and the marriage plans that have been made for her; to escape the expectations that limit her and every other girl in fourteenth-century Italy. There's no tolerance in her quiet village for Alessandra and her keen intelligence and unconventional ideas.
In defiant pursuit of her dreams, Alessandra undertakes an audacious quest, her bravery equaled only by the dangers she faces. Disguised and alone in a city of spies and scholars, Alessandra will find a love she could not foresee -- and an enduring fame.
In this exquisite imagining of the centuries-old story of Alessandra Giliani, the world's first female anatomist, acclaimed novelist Barbara Quick gives readers the drama, romance, and rich historical detail for which she is known as she shines a light on an unforgotten -- and unforgettable -- heroine.
About the Author
Writer and poet Barbara Quick is the author of the novels Vivaldi's Virgins and Northern Edge, winner of the Discover Prize. A Golden Web is her first book for teen readers. An avid traveler and student of other languages, she has run an international boardinghouse; written everything from self-help books to humor columns to grant requests for disadvantaged children; and done whatever jobs she needed to do -- from landscape gardening to catering to editing -- to allow her to continue writing. She lives with her teenage son, Julian, in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she takes frequent classes and occasionally performs with a Brazilian dance troupe.
“Alessandra’s intellectual curiosity is wonderfully depicted, her philosophical musings are entertaining, and her commitment to the pursuit of biological knowledge enlivens the plot. Quick’s prose is fluid and authentic, bright and engaging.”
— Publishers Weekly
“Quick has crafted an absorbing story about a delightful, courageous, intelligent young woman determined to make a difference in a time when women could be burned for societal rebellion far less dramatic than acquiring an education.”
— ALA Booklist
“A Golden Web is pure gold. This is a gripping plot blessed with gifted writing.”
— Grace Cavalieri, Producer/Host, "The Poet and the Peom from the Library of Congress"