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Download The Book of Unholy Mischief: A Novel Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Book of Unholy Mischief: A Novel, by Elle Newmark Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,252 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Elle Newmark Narrator: Raúl Esparza Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2008 ISBN: 9780743578066
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In a world of violence and intrigue, who guards the truth?

It is 1498, the dawn of the Renaissance, and Venice teems with rumors about an ancient book that holds the secret to unimaginable power. It is an alchemist's dream, with recipes for gold, immortality, and undying love. But while those who seek the book will stop at nothing to get it, those who know will die to protect it.

As a storm of intrigue and desire circles the republic that grew from the sea, Luciano, a penniless orphan with a quick wit and an even faster hand, is plucked up by an illustrious chef and hired, for reasons he cannot yet begin to understand, as an apprentice in the palace kitchen. There, in the lavish home of the most powerful man in Venice, he is initiated into the chef's rich and aromatic world, with all its seductive ingredients and secrets. It is not long before Luciano is caught up in the madness. After he witnesses a shocking murder in the Palace dining room, he realizes that nothing is as it seems and that no one can be trusted. Armed with a precocious mind and an insatiable curiosity, Luciano embarks on a perilous journey to uncover the truth. What he discovers will swing open the shutters of his mind, inflame his deepest desires, and leave an indelible mark on his soul.

Rich with the luxurious colors and textures of Venice, The Book of Unholy Mischief delights the senses and breathes fresh life into an age defined by intellectual revival and artistic vibrancy. A luminous and seductive novel, it is, at its heart, a high-spirited tribute to the fruits of knowledge and the extraordinary power of those who hold its key. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Gripping listening, thanks to Raúl Espara’s many-faceted performance. Don’t listen on an empty stomach: the recipes are mouth-watering.” 

    Times (London)

  • “Newmark does a fine job of building suspense and keeping the novel barreling along, and her knowledge of and affection for fifteenth century Venice adds charm to this nicely told adventure yarn.” 

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Raúl Esparza gives a thoroughly engrossing performance, understated and subtle, with nuance to spare, in Elle Newmark’s fantastical exploration of life in Venice at the end of the fifteenth century.” 

    Audiofile

  • Selected for the January 2009 Indie Next List

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Newengland | 2/20/2014

    " Not much in the way of characterization, plot, or description. You fight the good fight, but when you're on p. 120 and still fighting with the rear guard, it's time to retreat and regroup with a new book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Swanbender2001 | 2/12/2014

    " I highly recommend this book. The storyline was interesting and I was excited to get back to find out what was going on in the lives of the characters in Venice. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patty | 2/11/2014

    " You have to listen to the recorded version of the book - the guy does all the foreign accents and brings all these characters to life! I was so drawn into the story because the writing made everything so vivid to me. The book describes the senses - the taste of cheesecake, the aromas of the Rialto, the sight of a beautiful girl, the feel of a warm, purring cat. Beautiful book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Stephanie Corder | 2/1/2014

    " I really enjoyed this book! I could have done without so many Italian interjections and the occasional rambling but I LOVED the story and all the characters and the especially the food. I could see myself buying this book just so I could retread it without having to go to the library! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joan | 1/31/2014

    " I enjoyed this book. A street boy is taken in by a chef. Later, it appears he could be the chef's son. The chef is a part of the guardians who are seeking to save knowledge for the future. These guardians are all over the world. The boy is very curious. He wants to know everything and often spies on the chef to find answers to things the chef is not ready to tell him yet. Very good, fast moving story. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pat Stearman | 1/9/2014

    " Really enjoyed this book - anything set in Venice helps of course but good story and characters too. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sue | 1/9/2014

    " I really liked this book. It was about a chief and his apprentice and the power of "The Book". Interesting tidbits on food and intrigue . I recommend. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 A | 12/4/2013

    " Loved the book, it was well thought out... compelling read, there were a couple of areas of repetition, but not so that it was problematic. I thought it was a great book. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Leslie | 12/1/2013

    " I'm reading (the book, not audio CD)and will post a review of this yet to be released novel for another internet group: BookBrowse.com "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cynny | 8/2/2013

    " Positively rich and enveloping. Delicious and inviting. A riveting read!! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tracey | 10/30/2012

    " an easy read, and fun if you're into food and bashing mainstream religion. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jeanne | 6/3/2012

    " Lots of great description about food and cooking and life in Venice in 1485. Otherwise this is similar to a DaVinci Code-style book. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Chhaya | 4/15/2012

    " A quick, fun read, but the excessive build-up wasn't matched by what was finally revealed. Great writing about cooking/food though. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Evie | 1/13/2012

    " A delightful book for teachers, chefs, and history buffs! Fascinating, hard-to-put-down...my son and I had to take turns reading it, as neither on of us wanted to wait until the other was finished! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Daniela | 12/12/2011

    " loved this book. Thought it was very well written and i couldn't put it down because of all the mystery involved. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lisa | 11/25/2011

    " Well-written; a nice depiction of renaissance Venice. Story is a little far-fetched. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katherine | 11/24/2011

    " This book does what the Da Vinci Code tried to do, but achieves it with style, elegance and grace. In praise of food, loyalty and the pursuit of knowledge, it's a magical book. Read it - I guarantee you won't regret a second. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Richard Nicholson | 10/2/2011

    " Great read! Historical depth and accuracy is brilliant. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sisterkaren24 | 8/24/2011

    " I really enjoyed this book that my sister, Gloria, recommended. Funny and thought-provoking. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Keely | 8/14/2011

    " At this point , I can't put it down "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tracey | 4/18/2011

    " an easy read, and fun if you're into food and bashing mainstream religion. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tobi | 2/28/2011

    " Really enjoyed this book. Loved the Venice component, the cooking and some mishchief. The relationships are well developed and enjoyable. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Richard | 2/24/2011

    " Great read! Historical depth and accuracy is brilliant. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ada | 1/13/2011

    " If you like a mystery, cooking, historical fiction of Renaissance Italy, you will like this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Becky | 1/10/2011

    " It was interesting story, but think it will be forgotten soon. It took me a whole month to read, a little each night because I wasn't excited to pick it up. Has some interesting, and far reaching, ideas about religion. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Keely | 10/24/2010

    " At this point , I can't put it down "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Emma | 10/11/2010

    " Good, but not spectacular. Story of Venice (again) and secret ancient books (again) with the novel twist of the Chef for the Doge being the keeper of said book and a street urchin his apprentice. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dzillich | 10/7/2010

    " I liked the basic story line but not much else "

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