The Prague Cemetery Hardcover – Oct 19 2011
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Review"[Eco's] latest takes that longtime thriller darling, the conspiracy theory, and turns it into something grander...Sold to 40 countries and said to be controversial; a speed-read with smarts." -- Library Journal, Pre-Pub Alert, "My Picks" "A whirlwind tour of conspiracy and political intrigue...this dark tale is delightfully embellished with sophisticated and playful commentary on, among other things, Freud, metafiction, and the challenges of historiography." -- Booklist "Intriguing, hilarious....a tale by a master." -- Publishers Weekly boxed review "He's got a humdinger in this new high-level whodunit...a perplexing, multilayered, attention-holding mystery." -- Kirkus, starred "I find this book fascinating, perhaps the best Eco has written in years. Eco takes on conspiracy theories in the feverish political activism of nineteenth-century Europe--freemasonry, the Italian Risorgimento, the Paris Commune, and above all the forgery of the slanderous The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. What if there were a single mastermind behind all these conspiracies? It's already a bestseller in Italy, and I can't get enough of it!" -- Huffington Post "The Prague Cemetery is vintage Eco….Eco, the star bookworm of our times, has used his genius for excavating libraries to construct a semifictional narrative of how The Protocols might have evolved….The Prague Cemetery is at once entertainment, education, and warning. As usual, Eco has enjoyed himself. The narrative is vivid, shocking, sometimes baffling. It’s loaded ….with learned Eco disquisitions on bomb-making, the Paris sewers, the history of the Commune, the taxonomical distinctions between ladies on the game (grisettes, cocottes, biches, lorettes, and courtesans), early theories of brain function, and so forth. But as a genealogy showing how The Protocols evolved from the nightmares bequeathed to Europe by medieval heresy-hunting (the subject of The Name of the Rose), the book is a triumph." -- New York Review of Books
From the Back Cover
Chloe Mason’s childhood memories consist of seemingly endless hospital stays. Now all grown up and healthy, her determination to fill the gaping holes in her past leads her to her long-lost brother, Harry . . . which brings Harry’s friend and business partner, Mike Keillor, crashing into her life and her heart.
Former Marine Force Recon sniper and SWAT officer—a martial arts expert and owner of a successful security company—Mike can deal coolly and efficiently with any threat . . . until he’s blindsided by something he never expected: fierce, fiery passion . . . and love.
But when Chloe inadvertently crosses the Russian mob, Mike realizes that evil is darkening his world once again. He has already lost his family; he will not lose the woman who enflames him, who makes him whole. Failure is not an option.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Pros: fascinating look at a period of history largely ignored by modern readers, thought provoking
Cons: lots of politically incorrect and thereby uncomfortable speeches, vivid depiction of a black mass, unlikable protagonist
Simone Simonini's personal motto is, Odi ergo sum. I hate, therefore I am. An Italian living in Paris, Simonini hates: the Germans, the French, the Italians, women, Jesuits, and most importantly, the Jews. Which is why, after years of forging documents and fermenting chaos for various government agencies, he has created his masterpiece - a document that will turn the nations of the world against the Jews.
The novel begins with Simonini having lost his memory. He starts a diary in order to remember who he is, starting with his youth. Abbe Dalla Piccola, living in an adjoining apartment, has also lost his memory, but seems to know what happened during segments of Simonini's past, adding his own notes to Simonini's writings. Are they the same person? Or did Simonini merely confess these actions to the abbot?
Simonini is not a likable protagonist, and the book is an uncomfortable read, both due to Simonini's extremely vitriolic hate speeches (against many groups but there's more anti-semitic sentiment than others) as well as for a detailed description of a black mass (modified Latin and all). The second chapter of the book serves as a litmus test for the rest, shocking the reader and daring you to read on. If you can get past chapter 2 you'll have read the worst - though not the only - hate speeches in the book.
The book takes place during the late 1800s, when racist sentiments were the norm.Read more ›
At first, I thought I must be reading a book written by a reincarnated Voltaire who had majored in 19th century European history. As someone who did major in 19th century European history in college, I was fascinated to see how many real historical threads masterful novelist Umberto Eco tied together to one fictional character. In his cupidity, antihero Simone Simonini is a perfect reflection of the world he describes in terms of cynically fanning the flames of hate to advance some momentary interest or another. The opening pages are simply stunning in terms of their self-indictment of how little prejudice is usually based on.
From there, I'm sure you'll enjoy reading how many forged documents and "informational" campaigns were based on obscure novels that had been forgotten by many people. I almost fell out of my chair laughing in places while being reminded how many such deceptions were taken from the very same sources.
This book is so rich in history, perspective, and psychology that it could easily become the subject for a doctoral dissertation. I don't remember another modern novel with nearly this much intellectual content . . . put together in such an entertaining way. I agree that it's destined to be considered a masterpiece.
I hope that many young readers will have opportunities to read and to discuss its content in class. Such an investigation will help inoculate them against much of the cynical posturing that today's politicians and opinion makers engage in . . . for their own benefit and for the harm of most everyone else. In that sense, the book will seem at some levels as if it were also describing the 21st century.
Just marvelous! Don't miss it!
Most recent customer reviews
An amasing author, and all i can say is that i am sorry i didnt read more of his novels. Inteligent, sarcasm, a load of historical and cultural insights. Was a delight reading it!Published on March 7 2013 by gabriela