Nineteenth-century Europe - from Turin to Prague to Paris - abounds with the ghastly and the mysterious. Conspiracies rule history. Jesuits plot against Freemasons. Italian republicans strangle priests with their own intestines. French criminals plan bombings by day and celebrate black masses at night. Every nation has its own secret service, ...
Nineteenth-century Europe - from Turin to Prague to Paris - abounds with the ghastly and the mysterious. Conspiracies rule history. Jesuits plot against Freemasons. Italian republicans strangle priests with their own intestines. French criminals plan bombings by day and celebrate black masses at night. Every nation has its own secret service, perpetrating forgeries, plots, and massacres. From the unification of Italy to the Paris Commune to the Dreyfus Affair to notorious forgery The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Europe is in tumult and everyone needs a scapegoat. But what if, behind all of these conspiracies both real and imagined, lay one lone man? And what if that evil genius created the most infamous document of all? Eco takes his readers on an unforgettable journey through the underbelly of world-shattering events. "The Prague Cemetery" is Umberto Eco at his most exciting, a novel immediately hailed as his masterpiece.
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Ramblings on and on about a man who is sort of a spy but blunders through. I did not care about these characters, the story itself was very contrived, and a seriously poor ending that lets you down. Don't read it! Its not worth your time!
Publishers Weekly, 2011-08-29 Eco's latest takes as its focal point the creation of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the infamous and discredited document used by anti-Semites and conspiracy theorists everywhere as proof of a worldwide Jewish cabal. His fictional main character, Simone Simonini, is a spy, a forger, a murderer, and a misanthrope, whose deep hatred of the Jews (for starters) drives him to cobble together the Protocols from the actual texts of historical figures like Maurice Joly, Abbe Augustin Barruel, and Leo Taxil. Complicating matters is Simonini's gradual realization that he is suffering from a split personality, dividing his time between his conspiratorial acts as the self-anointed "Captain" Simonini and as a suspicious priest, Abbe Dalla Piccola. What follows is an overstuffed, intriguing, hilarious, and frustrating glimpse into the turbulent power struggles of late 19th-century Europe and the imagined path to one of the most notorious documents of the early 20th century. Readers of Eco's oeuvre will no doubt be familiar with, and most likely welcome as a challenge, the author's insistence on cluttering his narrative with what can only be characterized as intellectual braggadocio. Such extemporaneous information certainly adds to the sense of place and the awareness of being told a tale by a master, but the narrative gets lost in the details. While no one expects Dan Brown simplicity from Eco, his desire to impress-and demand so much of-his readers sometimes works against his best intentions. Illus. (Nov. 8) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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