Jewels of Paradise
Donna Leon

Book cover image

Narrated By: Cassandra Campbell

Duration: 8 hours and 51 minutes

What to expect

Caterina Pellegrini is a young Venetian musicologist hired by two competing cousins to find the truthful heir to an alleged treasure concealed by a once-famous, but now almost forgotten, baroque composer. Sworn to secrecy, Caterina can solve the mystery only by searching through the papers contained in the composer’s two chests that have not been opened for centuries.
As she delves into all quarters of his life, from professional to personal, she is drawn into one of the most scandalous affairs of the baroque era. When her research takes her in unexpected directions, she begins to wonder what dark secrets these chests hold and just whom can she trust?


Thriller / suspense fiction, Crime & mystery fiction

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[it has] all the ingredients of a zippy historical mystery in an intriguing new genre…Leon seamlessly interweaves the Italian cultural heritage into her story, and hasn’t lost her feeling for everyday life


Jewels of Paradise demonstrates the author’s deep understanding of Venice, and is an entertaining work that questions the changing values of life over the ages. Like life, it makes you wait to the end to understand the plot.

Selected by Lord Browne (former Chief Executive of BP) as his summer read in the Financial Times

Fans of Leon’s work will find much to enjoy here, particularly her elegant descriptions of day-to-day Venetian life and the city’s architectural wonders, and Caterina makes for an enjoyably irreverent companion for the tour.

Irish Times

Written with all Leon's elegant delicacy combined with her ability to reveal the truth almost without your noticing, this is a little gem of a book, immersed as it is in Leon's own love for the baroque.

Daily Mail

Splendid … a fascinating historical mystery. Full of authentic details and wittily recounted ... Leon’s 22nd novel has a freshness which indicates her delight in the subject