The Dante Club

The Dante Club

A Novel

Book - 2003
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In 1865 Boston, the Dante Club which consists of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes, James Russell Lowell, and J.T. Fields are finishing America's first translation of Dante's Divine comedy, but unfortunately the Boston Brahmins at Harvard College want to keep Dante in obscurity. The situation escalates when a series of murders erupts throughout Boston and Cambridge, modeled on the descriptions of Hell's punishment from Dante's Inferno, and it is up to Oliver Wendell Holmes and an outcast police officer to end the terror.
Publisher: New York : Random House, c2003
Edition: 1st ed. --
ISBN: 9780345490384
Branch Call Number: FIC Pearl
Characteristics: ix, 372 p


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Jul 23, 2018

A group of famous literary figures hunt down a serial killer who subjects his victims to the sin-specific tortures found in Dante’s Inferno. The author blends his considerable knowledge of Dante Alighieri’s life and works with the history of Boston after the Civil War to produce a respectable whodunnit. It’s also a book about friendship and loyalty triumphing over greed, bigotry, and vengeance. The club members interpersonal connections are tested; they learn to appreciate abilities beyond their own in Patrolman Rey. They stick to their task, pursuing clues despite discouragement and obstruction from the police and the Corporation. They rise above petty intellectual differences and clashes between their massive egos. I agree with reviewer Kristine Huntley: “Expertly weaving period detail, historical fact (the Dante Club did indeed exist), complex character studies, and nail-biting suspense, Pearl has written a unique and utterly absorbing tale.” It is, however, a tale morel likely to be relished by us English majors than by a wide swath of the America’s readers.

ArapahoeKati Oct 07, 2016

I think this book tried too hard to be too weighty and "surprise! it's a plot twist!" that it comes across as bulky and annoying.

CMLibrary_gjd_0 Jan 07, 2016

Not for the faint of heart! This book follows a real group of American authors who are trying to translate Dante for the masses. Soon, bodies are being found in and around Boston using Dante's idea of punishment. Can these middle age men bring the killings to and end, or will classics such as Dante, be forever barred from our shores? Wonderful debut novel.

ser_library Sep 06, 2014

a quick read full of interesting characters that refreshed my knowledge of Dante, Longfellow, Holmes and others

jw126 Oct 14, 2011

At times slow, but ending reinforces and reminds one the horrors of the Civil War and what some endured. Good reinforcement of Dante.

Oct 07, 2010

Not as good as the other two books by this author. Nevertheless, a an interesting read that holds your attention to the end.

Nov 30, 2009

Longfellow is such a caring person.

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