The Prague Cemetery

  • by Umberto Eco
  • Narrated by Sean Barrett
  • 14 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Nineteenth-century Europe, from Turin to Prague to Paris, abounds with the ghastly and the mysterious. Conspiracies rule history. Jesuits plot against Freemasons. Italian priests are strangled with their own intestines. French criminals plan bombings by day and celebrate black masses by 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 the 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 just one man? What if that evil genius created the most infamous document of all?

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A thrilling romp

This book claims that, with one exception, all the characters actually existed in real life. My grasp of European history is not wide enough to know whether this is true but I certainly recognised a lot of people.

However, that aside, Umberto Eco is a fantastic storyteller and this book is one tall story set against the backdrop of one of the most turbulent periods in recent times. His central character is Simonini, who tells us his story from a room in Paris where he has chosen to lock himself up and travel back over his life. This takes us to Italy and Prague, to the Paris Commune and beyond to the Dreyfus case. We meet with Freemasons, secret agents, Jews, priests, revolutionaries and all sorts in between.

I often feel that Umberto Eco makes stories complicated just for the sake of it and there are points in this story where you wish he would just get on with it. But this is a minor criticism of a fun read.

The narrator adds to the enjoyment, capturing different voices and the excitement of discovery.

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- Ian

Prague Cemetery - Umberto Ecco razor sharp

Although a little heavy in places due to its unrelentingly grim theme; its dark humour, intelligence and relevance to todays issues of media and political manipulation, scapegoating and state power make it a worthwhile read. Umberto Ecco's literary style and insight are unbeatable.
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- Jan

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-04-2012
  • Publisher: Random House AudioBooks