Monday, August 1, 2011

Book Review: A Spectacle of Corruption (2004) by David Liss

A Spectacle of Corruption (2004)
David Liss

David Liss sets his second Benjamin Weaver novel during the British elections of 1722. Weaver is falsely accused of murder and is sentenced to hang. He sets about escaping from captivity and donning a plausible disguise as one Matthew Evans. He then attempts to clear his name, a formidable task that is fraught with treachery and peril.

This may be my favorite Liss novel to date. It can't be easy to write historical fiction of this caliber. Liss, as always, explores the darker and seedier aspects of humanity, although people here seem driven more by self-interest than by actual evil. It's ironic that the author should introduce herein the logical concept of Ockham's Razor, as each of his complex books generally refutes this rational assumption of simplicity. There is not much straightforward or simple in any book by David Liss. But there is plenty to keep you riveted!

His new book is coming out August 9th.

My brief review of The Coffee Trader is here.

Blog Update:  My post entitled Happy Birthday, George Booth has been updated here with the three finalists of James Gurney's "New Yorker Unfinished Cover" contest.


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