Sunday, October 24, 2010

Codex 632 The Secret Identity of Christopher Columbus by Jose Rodrigues Dos Santos

This is one of those novels that would likely be considered a Da Vinci Code copycat, albeit the action takes place at a much slower pace and without the urgency of a police chase and a murderous monk. If you can overlook that similarity, this is actually a very good and intriguing book centered around the mystery enshrouding the background of Christopher Columbus. It is filled with all sorts of historical tidbits, coded messages, secrets, and forged or altered documents.

Thomas Noronha is a history professor and expert cryptographer based in Lisbon, where he teaches at the university. Struggling to care for a chronically ill child, a daughter with Down's Syndrome and heart problems has taken a toll on his marriage, his wife is tired all the time and they have grown apart, and he finds himself susceptible to the charms of a beautiful blonde Swedish exchange student when he is contacted by a prestigious American historical society dedicated to studying the Age of Discovery and asked to complete the work of an elderly historian who died suddenly before he could reveal the fruits of his research, which he claimed would change everything we thought we knew about that era.

Professor Noronha accepts the challenge, which comes with a generous salary, and embarks on a quest that takes him all over the world to unravel the secret identify of Christopher Columbus, who was, he discovers a man of many names, who even in his own lifetime sought to obscure and hide his real name and origins. Was he an uneducated Genoa silkweaver, a Portuguese Jew schooled in esoteric knowledge, steeped in the Kabbalah, or the scion of nobility forced to flee his home and lose himself because of his role in a royal conspiracy?

Travel along with Professor Noronha and see what the series of authentic historical clues lead you to believe.

1 comment:

librarypat said...

How in teresting. I had not heard of this book or the speculation on that many variations of Columbus's background. It will be interesting to see what information is out there and what the speculations are.
Thanks for the review.