A rousing literary mystery, translated from the Spanish, in which "book detective" Lucas Corso is drawn into a fantastical plot involving the murder of a noted bibliophile, the original manuscript of "The Three Musketeers," occult practices, and swashbuckling. It gets a little too tangled by the end, but it's an enjoyable ride most of the way. (And the last line is priceless.)
The movie 'The Ninth Gate' was based upon this book. If you have seen the movie, disregard it. There are several basic similarities, but (as always) so much is left out. The main omission: everything that has to do with Alexandre Dumas and 'The Three Musketeers', plot lines which make up the majority of this book.
This was a fantastic mystery that threw in shades of Sherlock Holmes, the occult, secret societies, and fanatical book lovers/collectors. It is not a fast read but it was well worth the time I spent on it.
In addition to being a well-written mystery with a twist, it also provides innumerable references to 'The Three Musketeers' and to the life and work of Alexandre Dumas. I have not yet read 'Musketeers' (it is now next on my list) but that did not diminish my enjoyment of this book.
The plot gets a little busy at times and there is a lot to keep up with, but in all the story is expertly crafted. If you are a book lover who enjoys a good mystery that will leave you guessing until the end, then this is an absolute must-read.
"Perez-Reverte has written a book with more twists and convolutions than a Chinese puzzle, which races along like a runaway freight train, but never careens out of control. For all the twist and turns, it knows where it's going, and carries the reader right along to the final page. For mystery fans and bibliophiles alike, it's a helluva joyride." amazon review
Thrilling intelligent mystery. Find some time to read this one -- not a quick read, but a really satisfying one.
A truly exciting, page-turning mystery with interesting characters and a romance that doesn't overshadow the main plot.