This long-awaited final novel in the bestselling Grazia dei Rossi Trilogy follows Grazia dei Rossi's only son, Danilo del Medigo, as he returns to the Republic of Venice at the height of Christendom's persecution of the Jews.
April, 1536. Danilo del Medigo arrives incognito in Venice from Istanbul, with two assassins hot on his trail. Western civilization is in crisis. Jews and "New Christians" — people whose families had converted from Judaism — are threatened with expulsion, imprisonment, and death. Danilo seeks refuge in the Venetian Ghetto, and promptly falls in love with the beautiful Miriamne Hazan.
But soon Danilo is blackmailed into becoming a spy for Venice, which means he must abandon Miriamne in order to save her. The only safe place is hiding in plain sight, so embeds himself within an itinerant group of actors travelling the Italian countryside. With assassins close behind, Danilo, together with a cast of libertines, courtesans, and fellow spies, witnesses the agony of the Renaissance: Protestants warring with Catholics, the Inquisition threatening everyone, and the Ottoman Empire poised to invade the heart of Europe. As fear and panic spread throughout the Jewish communities of Italy, a promise of a new lifeline emerges, and Danilo may be the only one who can ensure it.