The Last Kabbalist of
Lisbon, an international bestseller, is an extraordinary novel that
transports listeners into the universe of Jewish Kabbalah during the Lisbon
massacre of April 1506. Just a few years earlier, Jews living in Portugal were
dragged to the baptismal font and forced to convert to Christianity. Many of
these “New Christians” persevered in their Jewish
prayers and rituals in secret and at great risk; the hidden, arcane practices of the kabbalists, a
mystical sect of Jews, continued as well.
One such secret Jew was Berekiah Zarco, an intelligent young
manuscript illuminator. Inflamed by love and revenge, he searches, in the
crucible of the raging pogrom, for the killer of his beloved uncle Abraham, a
renowned kabbalist and manuscript illuminator, discovered murdered in a hidden
synagogue along with a young girl in dishabille. Risking his life in streets
seething with mayhem, Berekiah tracks down answers among Christians, New
Christians, Jews, and the fellow kabbalists of his uncle, whose secret language
and codes by turns light and obscure the way to the truth he seeks.
A marvelous story, a challenging mystery, and a
telling tale of the evils of intolerance, The
Last Kabbalist of Lisbon both compels and entertains.
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