Leonardo da Vinci is the most mysterious of all the great artists, continuing to inspire and intrigue centuries after his death. Who lies behind the legend of the ‘Renaissance genius’? What is the real story behind his elusive masterpieces and tantalizing notebooks? Prize-winning author Charles Nicholl has immersed himself for five years in all the manuscripts, paintings and artefacts to produce an ‘intimate portrait’ of Leonardo. He uses these contemporary materials – his notebooks and sketchbooks, eye witnesses and early biographies, etc – as a way into the mental tone and physical texture of his life and has made myriad small discoveries about him and his work and his circle of associates. This compelling, lyrical biography explores Leonardo’s life as never before, brilliantly illuminating the man behind the enigma.