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The Darwin Conspiracy

by

The Darwin Conspiracy Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In this riveting new novel, best-selling author John Darnton transports us to Victorian England and around the world to reveal the secrets of a legendary nineteenth-century figure. Darnton elegantly blends the power of fact and the insights of fiction to explore the many mysteries attached to the life and work of Charles Darwin.

What led Darwin to the theory of evolution? Why did he wait twenty-two years to write On the Origin of Species? Why was he incapacitated by mysterious illnesses and frightened of travel? Who was his secret rival? These are some of the questions driving Darnton's richly dramatic narrative, which unfolds through three vivid points of view: Darwin's own as he sails around the world aboard the Beagle; his daughter Lizzie's as she strives to understand the guilt and fear that struck her father at the height of his fame; and that of present-day anthropologist Hugh Kellem and Darwin scholar Beth Dulicmer, whose obsession with Darwin (and with each other) drives them beyond the accepted boundaries of scholarly research. What Hugh and Beth discover — Lizzie's diaries and letters lead them to a hidden chapter of Darwin's autobiography — is a maze of bitter rivalries, petty deceptions, and jealously guarded secrets, at the heart of which lies the birth of the theory of evolution.

With The Darwin Conspiracy, John Darnton again delivers a stunning tapestry of history and imagination, a galvanizing novel.

Review:

"Darwin's theories have been under attack since he first published The Origin of Species in 1859, but this grandly ambitious novel goes a few steps further to intimate that he was a fraud — and a murderer. Told by turns from three perspectives, the story opens in the present on a volcanic outcrop off the coast of Ecuador where Hugh Kellem, a British field researcher, while tracing Darwin's research path, meets Beth Dulcimer, a beautiful scientist rumored to be distantly related to Darwin. A quick shift shows an ambitious young Darwin about to embark on the Beagle. A little further on, Darwin's youngest daughter, Lizzie, enters via her journal entries, written in the 1870s, decades after Darwin's famous five-year voyage. As the three perspectives unfold, Hugh and Beth find themselves trying to solve the same mystery that intrigued Lizzie 130 years earlier: what happened on the 'nuit de feu,' the night that transformed the confident, robust Darwin into a haunted near-invalid for his remaining years? Stilted dialogue, perfunctory romance and expendable subplots make for a rough voyage, but Darnton (Neanderthal) puts real passion into his historical imaginings and recreations: the revelation of the 'true' origin of the theory of evolution is particularly inspired and more than enough to sustain another Darntonian bestseller. Agent, Kathy Robbins. 100,000 first printing. (Sept. 20)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"An entertaining, fast-paced read." Los Angeles Times

Review:

"Darnton has playfully created and solved several mysteries revolving around events during Charles Darwin's early voyage on the Beagle." The Boston Globe

Review:

"An elaborate scientific thriller, rich with detail and the pacing of a good murder mystery." Winston-Salem Journal

Review:

"A fast-paced, intriguing and exciting story." The Decatur Daily

Review:

"Going back and forth in time and written with careful elegance...this work...dares you to put it down at every chapter's end. Recommended..." Library Journal

Review:

"[T]he final sections are just plain silly....Reduces one of history's most important scientific discoveries to a mediocre whodunit." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"If there is a set of requirements for the idea-driven popular novel that serves up fast-paced history and questions of consequence, The Darwin Conspiracy has them all..." Washington Post

Review:

"The pages of The Darwin Conspiracy turn quickly and the ending is a neat surprise...But as it is, however, the book is not burdened with too much substance." Christian Science Monitor

Review:

"An elaborately plotted but unconvincing historical thriller in which two young researchers comb musty archives and crumbling manor houses for hidden documents that will reveal a secret side to Darwin's personality." New York Times

Review:

"A wonderfully entertaining creation that stands as a convincing mixture of truth and speculation....engaging speculative fiction about the convergence and deviations of science, faith and the truth they make up." Dallas Morning News

Synopsis:

Fact and fiction become intertwined in this novel that explores the mysteries attached to the life and work of Charles Darwin. The narrative unfolds through Darwin's view, that of his youngest daughter, Lizzie, and two scholars.

Synopsis:

From the author of the bestselling Neanderthal comes this novel of gripping suspense and scientific conquest-a page-turning historical mystery that brilliantly explores the intrigue behind Darwin and his theory of evolution.Its 1831, and aboard HMS Beagle the young Charles Darwin sets off down the English Channel for South America. More than 150 years later, two ambitious scholars pursuing their obsession with Darwin (and with each other) come across the diaries and letters of Darwins daughter. What they discover is a maze of violent rivalries, petty deceptions, and jealously guarded secrets, and the extraordinary story of an expedition embarked upon by two men. Only one returned-and changed history forever.

About the Author

John Darnton has worked for thirty-nine years as a reporter, editor, and foreign correspondent for the New York Times. He was awarded two George Polk Awards for his coverage of Africa and Eastern Europe, and the Pulitzer Prize for his stories smuggled out of Poland during the period of martial law. He lives in New York. His first novel, the best seller Neanderthal, was praised by the San Francisco Chronicle for being "as informative as it is entertaining."

Product Details

ISBN:
9781400034833
Author:
Darnton, John
Publisher:
Anchor Books
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Historical
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20060931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
7.54x5.80x.70 in. .53 lbs.

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Related Subjects


Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Popular Fiction » Contemporary Thrillers

The Darwin Conspiracy Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.95 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Anchor Books - English 9781400034833 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Darwin's theories have been under attack since he first published The Origin of Species in 1859, but this grandly ambitious novel goes a few steps further to intimate that he was a fraud — and a murderer. Told by turns from three perspectives, the story opens in the present on a volcanic outcrop off the coast of Ecuador where Hugh Kellem, a British field researcher, while tracing Darwin's research path, meets Beth Dulcimer, a beautiful scientist rumored to be distantly related to Darwin. A quick shift shows an ambitious young Darwin about to embark on the Beagle. A little further on, Darwin's youngest daughter, Lizzie, enters via her journal entries, written in the 1870s, decades after Darwin's famous five-year voyage. As the three perspectives unfold, Hugh and Beth find themselves trying to solve the same mystery that intrigued Lizzie 130 years earlier: what happened on the 'nuit de feu,' the night that transformed the confident, robust Darwin into a haunted near-invalid for his remaining years? Stilted dialogue, perfunctory romance and expendable subplots make for a rough voyage, but Darnton (Neanderthal) puts real passion into his historical imaginings and recreations: the revelation of the 'true' origin of the theory of evolution is particularly inspired and more than enough to sustain another Darntonian bestseller. Agent, Kathy Robbins. 100,000 first printing. (Sept. 20)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "An entertaining, fast-paced read."
"Review" by , "Darnton has playfully created and solved several mysteries revolving around events during Charles Darwin's early voyage on the Beagle."
"Review" by , "An elaborate scientific thriller, rich with detail and the pacing of a good murder mystery."
"Review" by , "A fast-paced, intriguing and exciting story."
"Review" by , "Going back and forth in time and written with careful elegance...this work...dares you to put it down at every chapter's end. Recommended..."
"Review" by , "[T]he final sections are just plain silly....Reduces one of history's most important scientific discoveries to a mediocre whodunit."
"Review" by , "If there is a set of requirements for the idea-driven popular novel that serves up fast-paced history and questions of consequence, The Darwin Conspiracy has them all..."
"Review" by , "The pages of The Darwin Conspiracy turn quickly and the ending is a neat surprise...But as it is, however, the book is not burdened with too much substance."
"Review" by , "An elaborately plotted but unconvincing historical thriller in which two young researchers comb musty archives and crumbling manor houses for hidden documents that will reveal a secret side to Darwin's personality."
"Review" by , "A wonderfully entertaining creation that stands as a convincing mixture of truth and speculation....engaging speculative fiction about the convergence and deviations of science, faith and the truth they make up."
"Synopsis" by , Fact and fiction become intertwined in this novel that explores the mysteries attached to the life and work of Charles Darwin. The narrative unfolds through Darwin's view, that of his youngest daughter, Lizzie, and two scholars.
"Synopsis" by , From the author of the bestselling Neanderthal comes this novel of gripping suspense and scientific conquest-a page-turning historical mystery that brilliantly explores the intrigue behind Darwin and his theory of evolution.Its 1831, and aboard HMS Beagle the young Charles Darwin sets off down the English Channel for South America. More than 150 years later, two ambitious scholars pursuing their obsession with Darwin (and with each other) come across the diaries and letters of Darwins daughter. What they discover is a maze of violent rivalries, petty deceptions, and jealously guarded secrets, and the extraordinary story of an expedition embarked upon by two men. Only one returned-and changed history forever.
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