Navola: A novel (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

A brilliant fantasy set in a world as brutal and bloody as any in the genre, rife with intricate plotting and political intrigues where assassins lurk with poison at the ready and resentments fester until they corrupt the entire body politic. To be anything other than ruthless in the realm of the archinomo of Navola is to court death and for Davico, scion to the most powerful house in the viper pit, even a single misstep could herald the fall of his entire family. 

Bacigalupi conjures a tension so ever-present and unrelenting that it is palpable. No one is safe in this game of stilettos and smiles; you can only read on, heart in your throat, and hope that the faint wisps of magic that flicker along the periphery will be enough to ensure survival.


— Jordan


From the New York Times best-selling author of The Windup Girl and The Water Knife comes a sweeping literary fantasy about the young scion from a ruling-class family who faces rebellion as he ascends to power.

"Steeped in poison, betrayal, and debauchery, reading Navola is like slipping into a luxurious bath full of blood." —Holly Black, #1 New York Times best-selling author

"You must be as sharp as a stilettotore’s dagger and as subtle as a fish beneath the waters. This is what it is to be Navolese, this is what it is to be di Regulai."

In Navola, a bustling city-state dominated by a handful of influential families, business is power, and power is everything. For generations, the di Regulai family—merchant bankers with a vast empire—has nurtured tendrils that stretch to the farthest reaches of the known world. And though they claim not to be political, their staggering wealth has bought cities and toppled kingdoms. Soon, Davico di Regulai will be expected to take the reins of power from his father and demonstrate his mastery of the games of Navolese diplomacy: knowing who to trust and who to doubt, and how to read what lies hidden behind a smile. But in Navola, strange and ancient undercurrents lurk behind the gilt and grandeur—like the fossilized dragon eye in the family’s possession, a potent symbol of their raw power and a talisman that seems to be summoning Davico to act.

As tensions rise and the events unfold, Davico will be tested to his limits. His fate depends on the eldritch dragon relic and on what lies buried in the heart of his adopted sister, Celia di Balcosi, whose own family was destroyed by Nalova’s twisted politics. With echoes of Renaissance Italy, The Godfather, and Game of Thrones, Navola is a stunning feat of world-building and a mesmerizing depiction of drive and will.

About the Author

PAOLO BACIGALUPI is the author of The Water Knife and The Windup Girl, as well as the YA novel Ship Breaker, which was a finalist for the National Book Award. He has won a Hugo and a Nebula Award, the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award, the John W. Campbell Memorial Award, and he is a three-time winner of the Locus Award. He lives in Colorado.

Praise For…

Praise for Paolo Bacigalupi's Navola

"Steeped in poison, betrayal, and debauchery, reading Navola is like slipping into a luxurious bath full of blood." —Holly Black, #1 New York Times bestselling author

“Medici Florence meets Tony Soprano’s New Jersey – with a delicious dash of high fantasy and a heavy splattering of blood. Navola is a grand feat of imagination by a storyteller at the peak of his powers.” —Dan Jones, New York Times best-selling author of Essex Dogs

Product Details
ISBN: 9780593535059
ISBN-10: 0593535057
Publisher: Knopf
Publication Date: July 9th, 2024
Pages: 576
Language: English