Notes From the Margins…

The Devils of Cardona

  • December 29, 2018
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In this gripping historical thriller set in sixteenth-century Spain, a Catholic priest is murdered by a mysterious Muslim avenger as the Inquisition continues to force Moriscos to live and worship as Christians.

In March 1584, the priest of Belamar de la Sierra, a small town in Aragon near the French border, is murdered in his own church. Most of the town”s inhabitants are Moriscos, former Muslims who converted to Catholicism. Anxious to avert a violent backlash on the eve of a royal visit, an adviser to King Philip II appoints local magistrate Bernardo de Mendoza to investigate. A soldier and humanist, Mendoza doesn”t always live up to the moral standards expected of court officials, but he has a reputation for incorruptibility.

From the beginning, Mendoza finds almost universal hatred for the priest. And it isn”t long before he”s drawn into a complex and dangerous world in which greed, fanaticism, and state policy overlap. And as the killings continue, Mendoza’s investigation is overshadowed by the real prospect of an ethnic and religious civil war.

By turns an involving historical thriller and a novel with parallels to our own time, The Devils of Cardona is an unexpected and compelling read.

“The Devils of Cardona delivers a gritty, meticulously detailed story of suspense in sixteenth-century Spain. Matthew Carr recreates for us a dramatic time and place filled with complex characters and issues that resonate powerfully with our own time.” Matthew Pearl, author of THE DANTE CLUB and THE LAST BOOKANEER

“The Devils of Cardona is a remarkably well-written and entertaining novel. Mathew Carr fills his work with compelling characters and handles his material more than a little relevant for our times with dazzling grace.” –David Liss, author of The Day of Atonement

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About Me

I’m a writer, campaigner and journalist.  My latest book is The Savage Frontier: The Pyrenees in History and the Imagination (New Press/Hurst, 2018).  The Infernal Machine is where I write on politics, history, cinema and other things that interest me.

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