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The Sixteen Pleasures

The Sixteen Pleasures

Author(s): Robert Hellenga

Location(s): Florence

Genre(s): Fiction

Era(s): 1960s



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In 1966 the Arno River in Florence floods its banks causing hug devastation to stored artworks, and antique books. As a book conservator Margot Harrington flie in – along with many other volunteers – to add expert help in the conservation of fine art. They are known as the “Mud Angels”. She finds her way to a Carmelite convent where she discovers a book, bound within a book of erotic drawings. She is charged in secret, and not directly, to find the highest bidder for these drawings by the abbess, so the convent might supplement its meagre income. This is the story of her quest to conserve this masterpiece, her love affair and the trials of those working under duress and with limited means to preserve as many items as possible for posterity.

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