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Laura Morelli Author


Experience the next generation of audio / visual tours.
Don't just see the sites, Step inside their stories. 

Laura Morelli earned a Ph.D. in art history from Yale University. She is a USA Today and Publishers Weekly bestselling historical novelist, with book club picks at Target, Costco, Veranda Magazine, and Hudson News. Laura has also been a regular contributor to National Geographic Traveler, Italy Magazine, and Departures

Laura has earned awards for historical fiction (an IPPY, Eric Hoffer Award, Da Vinci Eye Prize, National Indie Excellence, Benjamin Franklin, Writer’s Digest), as well as starred reviews and editor’s picks in Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, the Historical Novels Review.

The Unveiling of Michelangelo's David. An audiovisual Tour of Florence's Historic City Center written by Laura Morelli

In 1504, Florence, Italy, simmers with political intrigue and artistic ingenuity. The Medici family plots their return to prominence, but the city’s new leaders have other ideas. They have commissioned the young sculptor Michelangelo Buonarroti to create a colossal David to stand as a symbol of the new Republic against the Medici’ Goliath.


Medici sympathizers have hired a band of mercenaries to ensure that this rumored masterpiece will never survive atop it’s intended pedestal at the gates of the Palazzo Vecchio. Follow the mercenary Alessio around Florence Cathedral and through the narrow streets and alleyways as he works to bring his clients’ destructive wishes to fruition in the Piazza della Signoria. 

Learn about Renaissance Florence, Michelangelo, and one of the world’s greatest works of art by Stepping Inside the Story of BARDEUM’s The Unveiling of Michelangelo’s David.  

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The Giant: A Novel of Michelangelo's David (2020)


"In her latest novel, Laura Morelli is as much of an artist as her subject, painting a captivating tale of Michelangelo through the eyes of a lifelong friend, Jacopo Torni. THE GIANT is an absolute joy to read; a well-researched and beautifully told story of the most famous sculpture in the world." --Crystal King, author of FEAST OF SORROW

"Richly drawn and meticulously researched, THE GIANT tells the story of one of the most famous works of art in Western history through the lens of an intimate observer. Narrator Jacopo Torni guides us through the streets, taverns, art studios, and halls of power of Renaissance Florence with wit and heart, so that I've almost come to think of him as a friend of mine. A must read for those at all interested in the Renaissance or art history!"
-Alyssa Palombo, author of THE BORGIA CONFESSIONS

The Night Portrait: A Novel of World War II and da Vinci's Italy (2020):


"Laura Morelli’s The Night Portrait is simply a masterpiece. Morelli imagines a sophisticated plot, fleshes it out with historically significant characters, and spins it into a truly spectacular read. Rarely have I been so caught up in a book as I was with this unforgettable tale of bravery and love, hope and redemption. Fans of Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale and Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See will delight in this epic novel." - Lori Nelson Spielman, international bestselling author.

"Laura Morelli's The Night Portrait is a gorgeous and propulsive novel that brings to dramatic life the stories of Leonardo da Vinci, the subject of one of his most famous paintings, and the Monuments Men's quest to rescue that masterpiece from the Nazis during World War II. This stunning novel is a great masterpiece on its own, making you see old stories -- and old art -- in fresh, new ways. Perfect for any art lover or anyone who wants to understand why we all must care about the history of art." - Stephanie Storey, author of Oil and Marble and Raphael, Painter in Rome

The Gondola Maker 

Venetian gondola-maker Luca Vianello considers his whole life arranged. His father charted a course for his eldest son from the day he was born, and Luca is positioned to inherit one of the city’s most esteemed boatyards. But when Luca experiences an unexpected tragedy in the boatyard, he believes that his destiny lies elsewhere. Soon he finds himself drawn to restore an antique gondola with the dream of taking a girl for a ride.

Awards: Publishers Weekly starred review; Benjamin Franklin Award; IPPY Award for Best Adult Fiction E-book; National Indie Excellence Award Finalist; Eric Hoffer Award Finalist; and Shortlisted for the da Vinci Eye Prize


The Painter's Apprentice: A Novel of 16th Century Venice 

Venice, 1510. Maria Bartolini wants nothing more than to carry on her father’s legacy as a master gilder. Instead, her father has sent her away from the only home she’s ever known to train as an apprentice to Master Trevisan, a renowned painter. When the painter’s servants uncover the real reason why Maria has been sent away, they threaten to reveal a secret that could tear down her family and the future of their trade. 

Awards: 2018 Writer's Digest Self-Published Book Award, Honorable Mention; Eric Hoffer Grand Prize Finalist; and Editor's Choice, Historical Novels Review


Laura is also the author of the following travel guides: 


Made In Italy; Made in Venice; Artisans of Venice; Made in Florence; Artisans of Venice; Made in Naples & the Amalfi Coast; Artisans of Naples & the Amalfi Coast; Made in France; and Made in the Southwest.

Laura has also written for National Geographic Traveler, USA TODAY, Italy Magazine, Departures, and other media.

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