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It’s a stronger pull than the tide, but beauty’s only part of it… Set in Byzantine Constantinople, this is the tragic and epic tale of mysterious Theodora and her meteoric rise to power from bear-keeper’s daughter to Empress. Theodora was a circus performer and prostitute, before catching the eye of a clever young military officer one stormy summer night at the Imperial Palaces. The soldier and the swan dancer set out on a treacherous path to power that would lead all the way to the throne. The events that ensue, amid the struggles and politics of a society in flux, will leave a city in smouldering ruins.

Carol Strickland is an author, screenwriter and regular correspondent on art, architecture and cultural topics for various publications such as The Christian Science Monitor, New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, The Nation, Art in America and Art & Antiques.

She is the author of the acclaimed art history book The Annotated Mona Lisa: A Crash Course in the History of Art from Prehistoric to Post-Modern and The Annotated Arch: A Crash Course in the History of Architecture. The American Library Association includes The Annotated Mona Lisa in its Top 100 list of recommended books and, having sold 400,000 copies, it is frequently listed as one of Amazon’s best-selling art books. It has been published in multiple editions and translations. Both Annotated books were Book of the Month Club selections. Strickland has also written The Illustrated Timeline of Art History: A Crash Course in Words and Pictures, The Illustrated Timeline of Western Literature, and her essays have appeared in monographs on the artists Paul Waldman and Aris Kalaizis. Her film scripts have been produced as documentaries and broadcast on cable television.

Strickland has a Ph.D. in American Literature from the University of Michigan and has taught at Stony Brook University, Rutgers University, Southampton College, Stevens Institute of Technology and La Guardia Community College. She now has a home on Long Island in New York State.

Released 7th November 2013

Available on Kindle

180,000 words – approx. 12 hours of reading

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