Title: The Secret of Vesalius by Jordi Llobregat
Expected publication: November 2017
Page count: 582 (hardback)
Daniel Amat has left Spain and all that happened there behind him. Having just achieved a brilliant role in Ancient Languages at Oxford University and an even more advantageous engagement, the arrival of a letter – a demand – stamped Barcelona comes like a cold hand from behind.
He arrives back in that old, labyrinthine and near-mythic city a few days before the great 1888 World Fair, amid dread whispers of murders – the injuries reminiscent of an ancient curse, and bearing signs of the genius 16th century anatomist, Vesalius. Daniel is soon pulled into the depths of the crime, and eventually into the tunnels below Barcelona, where his own dark past and the future of science are joined in a terrible venture – to bring the secret of Vesalius to life.
Gothic and gripping, this historical thriller makes of Barcelona a diabolical character – emerging out of the dark into a new electrical age, aflame with spirit, superstition and science. Published in eighteen countries, Jordi Llobregat’s bestselling first novel mixes a passionate setting and cryptic mystery into a genre-crossing phenomenon.
First off, I would like to note that this book initially was released in 2015 but only in Spanish. This will be its first round in the English speaking market so I’m still going to count it as an upcoming release.
This book sounds like it has everything that appeals to me. Historical fiction? Check. World’s Fair? Always a fascination. Murder, mayhem, and mystery? Sign me up. If this title interests you as much as it does me, it can currently be found as an eARC on Netgalley. Sadly, it is not open to the American audience (only Australia, Europe, and the United Kingdom) so I’ll have to wait for official publication.
Jordi has a passion for cities, and in particular their historical evolutions and transformations. His mother’s side of the family hails from Barcelona, and his great grandfather worked in the forge that produced Pere Falqués’ famous modernist lampposts found on the Paseo de Gracia. Jordi began writing at the age of twelve after watching the film The Man from Acapulco with Jean Paul Belmondo and Jacqueline Bisset.
He currently combines writing with his work as head of a company that works on community development in cities. His work has been included in several short story anthologies.
He is director of the noir fiction festival, Valencia Negra. (from Goodreads)
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