Find out the latest indie author news. For FREE.


Rebels in Pisa
Renaissance Italy 1465: After six decades of domination by Florence, agitators in Pisa are impatient to regain the freedom of their past when Pisa was an independent State. Rumors of insurrection in Pisa spur Florentine authorities to send young lawyer Nico Argenti and his team to investigate and stop the agitators. In Pisa, the team confronts more than they expected: smuggling, abduction, and murder.
Plot/Idea: 7 out of 10
Originality: 8 out of 10
Prose: 7 out of 10
Character/Execution: 8 out of 10
Overall: 7.50 out of 10


Plot/Idea: Book five of the Nico Argenti series set in Renaissance Italy sees the titular lawyer investigating an uprising in Pisa. Readers will benefit from reading the previous books to gain more background on Nico, but Tentarelli nicely lays out the circumstances while providing historical context for the events that transpire.

Prose: The author maintains a highly readable and finely detailed prose style that will keep readers engaged.

Originality: Tentarelli carves out a unique storytelling niche through the Italian Renaissance setting and the distinctive nature of Nico's investigations. Tentarelli's series offers undeniable appeal for mystery lovers and those entranced by the era.

Character/Execution: Readers will be charmed by Nico Argenti as he sets out to investigate insurrection in Pisa. The Italian locales, customs, and mise-en-scène are all beautifully established, allowing readers to fully immerse themselves in the circumstances.

Date Submitted: August 13, 2023

Midwest Book Review

Rebels in Pisa is a historical mystery that presents the fifth book in the Nico Argenti series, combining intrigue with the political atmosphere of Renaissance Italy in 1465. Nico and his fellow Florentine Security Commissioners conceal their identities to work undercover with the Pisan loyalists, trying to identify their rebel leader before he fosters an insurrection.

Many clues are presented as Nico races against time to not only identify the leader, but stop the tide of events that threaten the security and safety of Florence and its leaders.

As Nico becomes privy to the thoughts and perceptions of ordinary men, readers learn about the economic, social, and political undercurrents of Pisa during these times:

“You asked about Pisans with animosity toward Florence. Yes, there are men who say Pisa should reclaim its independence. You have only to listen to the business owners and the men who cannot find work to hear their resentment. They don’t hide their beliefs. They voice their complaints openly.”

The dialogues, political and social observations, and trials and accusations that emerge immerse Nico and his readers in a series of conflicts that portray the simmering siege and tidal changes of Pisa, Florence, and the Renaissance era.

Ken Tentarelli brings these conflicts to life, staying true to both history and mystery as Nico delves deeper into a quagmire of opposing beliefs about Pisa's place in the world.

His dual attention to building atmosphere and presenting historical facts makes for an especially compelling work that needs no prior introduction to Nico's life and position from previous books in order to prove completely accessible to newcomers.

As Nico experiences courtroom victories that are accompanied by disturbing revelations and ongoing puzzles, readers will find his story engrossing and packed with unexpected twists and turns.

Libraries and readers seeking exceptional attention to the development of both historical foundations and an underlying mystery that shakes the political and social structure of Renaissance Italy will welcome the fast pace and insights that Rebels in Pisa employs to involve readers in the times through Nico's investigative savvy and eyes.