Leonardo's Secret Painting

Original title: Il dipinto segreto di Leonardo

Publication Date:

October 2018



Original language and publisher

Italian | Edizioni Piemme


Crime & Thrillers, Historical Fiction

Leonardo's Secret Painting

Original title: Il dipinto segreto di Leonardo

  • 2 Seas Agency represents: Dutch rights
  • Rights sold: France (HC editions), Spain/Latin America (Edhasa), the Netherlands (Boekerij), Portugal (Marcador), Bulgaria (Colibri).
  • English sample available.


2019 will be the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death.

After the bestselling Il Libro Secreto di Dante (700,000 copies sold in Italy), Francesco Fioretti returns to bookstores with a new revelation: from a numerical enigma contained in the portrait of Luca Pacioli, the author constructs a compelling storyline with Leonardo da Vinci as its protagonist.

After coming across a bloodstained hand and the corpse of a friar who had been stabbed to death in a Franciscan monastery after trying to steal some Byzantine books, Leonardo manages to solve the mystery surrounding the picture and reveal its meaning thanks to his friend, the mathematician Luca Pacioli, a pupil of Piero della Francesca. Fioretti conjures up an immersive fresco of one of the most eventful periods in the history of Western civilization, when the intrigues of the neo-Platonic sects, the innovative ideas of the artistic avant-gardes and movements like that of Savonarola were the order of the day.

Leonardo’s Secret Painting is a vibrant and original historical thriller: a fascinating journey through Renaissance Italy where Leonardo – who was working on The Last Supper at the time – meets some of the best-known personages of his day, including Machiavelli, Michelangelo and Raphael.

Francesco Fioretti’s novel debut became a literary case in Italy. Il libro segreto di Dante (Newton Compton, 2011) sold around 700,000 copies, received rave reviews and shot up the Italian bestseller lists, and stayed there for months. Afterward, he published Il quadro segreto di Caravaggio, La profezia di Dante (Newton Compton) and La Selva Oscura, (Rizzoli 2015).


The Netherlands (Boekerij)