THE MEDICI GUNS by Martin & Robert Ross Woodhouse

THE MEDICI GUNS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The authors have undoubtedly taken considerable liberties with the career of Leonardo da Vinci, but it really doesn't matter since this is in essence an uncomplicated 15th century action-adventure which proceeds from Leonardo's contribution to the art of ballistics. Much of the story takes place outside the Roman-held bastion of Castelmonte, besieged by Lorenzo de Medici, for whom Leonardo serves as military engineer. Between reconnaissance missions at the battlements, Leonardo is out in a field experimenting with arrows and guns -- to invent a new method of firing by mathematical calculation. He visits Rome, is set upon by assassins, and has an affair with -- and this is truly out of line -- Bianca, cousin of Lorenzo. However, in spite of the fabrications, the authors have given Medicis' warfare a blistering verisimilitude and the tale moves with the speed of Leonardo's drawing (which he does herein with both hands at once). If not taken too seriously, a satisfyingly noisy cannonade.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1975
Publisher: Dutton