An extraordinary, epic, brilliantly-imagined new novel from a world-class writer.
Umberto Eco (1932-2016) wrote fiction, literary criticism and philosophy. His first novel, The Name of the Rose, was a major international bestseller. His other works include Foucault's Pendulum, The Island of the Day Before, Baudolino, The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana, The Prague Cemetery and Numero Zero along with many brilliant collections of essays.
Brother William of Baskerville heads to an Italian abbey in The Name of the Rose. Father Caspar sails the seven seas in The Island of the Day Before. Eco's characters are forever on the move, and his new protagonist is no exception. In 1204, as Constantinople is being plucked apart by knights of the Fourth Crusade, a hapless courtier named Niketas is rescued by Baudolino - adopted son of the emperor known as Barbarossa and a man with a fantastic tale to tell. And tell it he does, to the obliging Niketas, in over 500 pages of elaborate, historically precise detail. Baudolino's journey takes him from northern Italy, where as a clever peasant boy he encounters Barbarossa and is immediately taken to court, to studies in Paris, travels throughout Italy to defend Barbarossa's cause, and finally a quest deep into the East, where he hopes to find the magical kingdom of Prester John. If you have time to sink yourself deep into the text, this can be a delicious read, but there is less of the sparkling, diamond-cut investigation of ideas that can make Eco so much fun to read, and Baudolino's backing-and-forthing can get a bit tedious. Still, Eco is ever popular, this book is getting a big push, and Baudolino's adventures should please anyone looking for the ultimate medieval road novel. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/1/02.] - Barbara Hoffert, "Library Journal" Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Readers admire Eco the semiotician, but they love Eco the novelist. Here, he returns to his old stomping ground the Middle Ages to relate the story of a quest for a priceless relic that is prompted by an imaginary map. This book is not currently available in English. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
A whirlwind of an adventure- and has everything - myths, marvels,
monsters, murders, mysteries * Financial Times *
Here is the Eco of The Name of the Rose...poised, mischievous and erudite, the fruit of extraordinary knowledge * Washington Post *
[Eco] has given us, in the book's central character, a grand and sympathetic figure in the tradition of Candide and Sancho Panza * Independent on Sunday *
Mixing pages of intellectual discussion and exhilarating comedy - further reveals Eco's practically inexhaustible erudition * Irish Times *
A richly entertaining novel * Sunday Times *