A suspenseful, intoxicating mystery of art, young love
and betrayal, set amid the glory and corruption of Renaissance
When young Francesco Angeli sees a golden-haired woman being
pulled from the Tiber on a rainy Rome morning, he is shocked to
realize that he knows her. It is 1508, and Francesco is a reluctant
houseboy to Michelangelo, who is at work on the ceiling of the
Sistine Chapel. Francesco prefers the company of the urbane Raphael
and the artistic circle that gathers at the home of Imperia, who
operates a brothel in the shadow of the Vatican while the
all-powerful Pope Julius II turns a blind eye. The woman in the
river is one of Imperia''s ladies, and against his will, Francesco
becomes involved in the search for the truth about her death.
Meanwhile, rising waters flood the city''s streets, turning
Romans into refugees and the Coliseum into an emergency refuge, and
hungry wolves descend from the hills to stalk the city like ghosts.
As Francesco follows the deepening mystery from the backstreets to
the pope''s inner sanctum, he begins to realize that danger and
corruption may lurk behind the most beautiful of facades.