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Secrecy: Rupert Thomson


Rupert Thomson

774 valoraciones por Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1847081630 / ISBN 13: 9781847081636
Editorial: Granta, UK, 2013
Condición: Fine Encuadernación de tapa dura
Librería: Tarquin Rees Modern First Editions (Hastings, Reino Unido)

Librería en AbeBooks desde: 11 de septiembre de 2014

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UK First edition, first printing. Signed and dated by author to title page. As new in unread condition. N° de ref. de la librería P397

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Detalles bibliográficos

Título: Secrecy

Editorial: Granta, UK

Año de publicación: 2013

Encuadernación: Hardcover

Condición del libro:Fine

Condición de la sobrecubierta: Fine

Ejemplar firmado: Signed by Author

Edición: 1st.

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A sorcerer in wax. A fugitive. Haunted by a past he cannot escape. Threatened by a future he cannot imagine.
Zummo, a Sicilian sculptor, is summoned by Cosimo III to join the Medici court. Late seventeenth-century Florence is a hotbed of repression and hypocrisy. All forms of pleasure are brutally punished, and the Grand Duke himself, a man for whom marriage has been an exquisite torture, hides his pain beneath a show of excessive piety.
The Grand Duke asks Zummo to produce a life-size woman out of wax, an antidote to the French wife who made him suffer so. As Zummo wrestles with this unique commission, he falls under the spell of a woman whose elusiveness mirrors his own, but whose secrets are far more explosive. Lurking in the wings is the poisonous Dominican priest, Stufa, who has it within his power to destroy Zummo’s livelihood, if not his life.
In this highly charged novel, Thomson brings Florence to life in all its vibrant sensuality, while remaining entirely contemporary in his exploration of the tensions between love and solitude, beauty and decay. When reality becomes threatening, not to say unfathomable, survival strategies are tested to the limit. Redemption is a possibility, but only if the agonies of death and separation can be transcended.


An Amazon Best Book of the Month, April 2014: “He came on a November day, a cold wind blowing, the fields soaked with rain.” With that opening line we’re introduced to Zummo, the mysterious Sicilian sculptor whose specialty is dioramas of death: wax figures of dead and dying plague victims, with rats tugging at their entrails. “I’m interested in corruption and decay,” he explains. Set in Florence, in the late 1600s, Zummo is commissioned by the Grand Duke to create a wax sculpture of a woman to replace his wife, the Duchess (who hates her husband and has fled the royal manor). British writer Rupert Thomson’s characters are fantastically comical or creepy or weird: an imperious nobleman who rolls “syllables on his tongue like pieces of soft fruit”; a menacing black-robed priest (“slippery, reptilian”); a beautiful apothecary girl of suspicious lineage; a gossipy house boy with a missing ear named, of course, Earhole. Packed with enough lies, betrayals, jealousies, couplings, and secrets to rival, say, Congress, this is a rich and delicious book that reads more like a brainy mystery than “historical.” That’s not a dig at the historical bits. The recreation of life on the dangerous streets of Renaissance Florence is masterful. Says the sculptor (again, a line that could apply to Congress): “I’d never lived in a place where paranoia was so completely justifiable.” Maybe I’m easy to please, or I’m a sucker for micro-scenes like the royal librarian who walks away from a Jesuit scholar and a few monks, mutters “nest of vipers” and chomps into a hard-boiled egg. I’m also a sucker for Thomson’s language: palace floors are “voluptuous with dust,” an old woman smells of “famine breath,” a man’s privates are referred to as “Your root. Your yard. Your pego.” Famine in the countryside, an earthquake, love and death and disturbing works of art... I loved it all. --Neal Thompson

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We are specialist dealers in rare and collectable modern first editions with a particular focus on: signed modern firsts, hypermodern fiction, Horror, Crime, Literature in translation, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies and Occult/esoteric interest.

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