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The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl

The Dante Club (2003)

by Matthew Pearl

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5,370None812 (3.37)184
  1. 60
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  2. 31
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    iubookgirl: If you enjoy books that weave real historical figures and events into a work of fiction, you'll love this book.
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    Heresy by S. J. Parris (cbl_tn)
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    Mortal Mischief by Frank Tallis (heidialice)
    heidialice: Also published as "Death in Vienna", "Mortal Mischief" is the first in a series of historical fiction murder mysteries set in Vienna, with Freud as a minor character.
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» See also 184 mentions

English (113)  Italian (6)  Spanish (5)  German (2)  Danish (1)  French (1)  Catalan (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (130)
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{Nick's first suggestion / loan to me}
  SNO24601 | Mar 25, 2014 |
"The Dante Club" is a historical fiction novel laced in the mystery-thriller genre. Historical fiction books are some of my favorite. Matthew Pearl did a wonderful job piecing together this novel. You have a literary group (consisting of three poets, a historian and a publisher) working against odds to translate Dante's "Divine Comedy" in order to bring it to America for the first time ever. In the process of this, someone is going around killing people referencing the book. The group, along with one of the first African American policemen in Boston, are trying to solve the mystery together. I enjoyed how everything fell into place in the end showing that there were keys through-out the book. It also shines a light of real issues of that era. I look forward to reading more of Matthew Pearls books. ( )
  Luna.Falena | Jan 15, 2014 |
Great mystery. Really enjoyable - much in the style of Umberto Eco, I thought. ( )
  stuart10er | Nov 5, 2013 |
I enjoyed this book for its historical skippy-hoppy into 19th-century America. Longfellow, Lowell, and Oliver Wendall Holmes all play characters in this murderous thriller, and I actually started believing some of their cud chewing. Mix that with Dante's Inferno and you have a rather original novel.

Matthew Pearl's writing had me eagerly tagging along until the 2/3 mark, and then I started to flag a bit, just as I flagged when first reading Dante. There are only so many Circles of Hell I can endure in one reading. Still, it's inventive and meant for October afternoons when the sun sets earlier and the dark comes on quicker.

Book Season = Autumn (bone chill)
( )
  Gold_Gato | Sep 16, 2013 |
Although I had a difficult time getting into this book (I admit that I am unfamiliar with the writings of most of the authors who are members of The Dante Club), I'm glad I did because I learned about the writers and their works, plus enjoyed the mystery. The work reminded me of Angels and Demons (not the content, but the way murders were committed), which was interesting. The fraternity of the club members was endearing, but I wonder was it accurate? Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr. was a doctor and his son became the Supreme Court justice - again, is the depiction of their relationship accurate? I guess I need to read some more history. The examination of post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD) for Civil War soldiers interested me greatly, particularly because the war consisted of countrymen killing countrymen, which was psychically debilitating for individual soldiers as well as the whole country. This trauma has flowed through our country's life for close to 200 years, and continues to haunt many of our young men and women. ( )
  brickhorse | Sep 13, 2013 |
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John Kurtz, the chief of the Boston police, breathed in some of his heft for a better fit between the two chambermaids.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 034549038X, Mass Market Paperback)

The New York Times Bestseller

Boston, 1865. A series of murders, all of them inspired by scenes in Dante’s Inferno. Only an elite group of America’s first Dante scholars—Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Oliver Wendell Holmes, James Russell Lowell, and J. T. Fields—can solve the mystery. With the police baffled, more lives endangered, and Dante’s literary future at stake, the Dante Club must shed its sheltered literary existence and find the killer.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:50:29 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

"In 1865 Boston, the literary geniuses of the Dante Club - poets and Harvard professors Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes, and James Russell Lowell, along with publisher J. T. Fields - are finishing America's first translation of The Divine Comedy and preparing to unveil Dante's remarkable visions to the New World. The powerful Boston Brahmins at Harvard College are fighting to keep Dante in obscurity, believing that the infiltration of foreign superstitions into American minds will prove as corrupting as the immigrants arriving at Boston Harbor." "The members of the Dante Club fight to keep a sacred literary cause alive, but their plans fall apart when a series of murders erupts through Boston and Cambridge. Only this small group of scholars realizes that the gruesome killings are modeled on the descriptions of Hell's punishments from Dante's Inferno. With the lives of the Boston elite and Dante's literary future in America at stake, the Dante Club members must find the killer before the authorities discover their secret." "Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes and an outcast police officer named Nicholas Rey, the first black member of the Boston police department, must place their careers on the line to end the terror. Together, they discover that the source of the murders lies closer to home than they ever could have imagined."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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LibraryThing Author

Matthew Pearl is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

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Matthew Pearl chatted with LibraryThing members from Oct 5, 2009 to Oct 16, 2009. Read the chat.

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