Advance reader reviews of The Book of Unholy Mischief by Elle Newmark.

The Book of Unholy Mischief

A Novel

By Elle Newmark

The Book of Unholy Mischief
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  • Published in USA  Jan 2009,
    384 pages.

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There are currently 15 member reviews
for The Book of Unholy Mischief
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  • Stephanie - Hudson, OH (Strongsville OH)


    Food and Heresy make for a Good Discussion
    If you liked "Like Water for Chocolate" and "The DaVinci Code," you'll like this book. The descriptions of food are sumptuous and the characters are, for the most part, likable and interesting. I enjoyed the story and thought that a book club would find much to discuss. The anti-Christian parts might turn some people off, but it doesn't claim to be non-fiction, so you can just use the "heretical" ideas as something to talk about. And for the non-Christian, some of the explanations are pretty intriguing.
  • Gail (Albuquerque NM)


    Book of Unholy Mischief
    Would appeal to students of the survival of knowledge through early Renaissance Inquisition. I preferred Susan Vreeland's period piece, Passion of Artemisia but enjoyed Newmark's familiarity with the architecture and byways of Venice and her interest in cooking. This would be good fodder for my book club. We'd like discussing the growth of Luciano's character and why the chef chose to mentor him.
  • Jean (DePere WI)


    The Book of Unholy Mischief
    I enjoyed this book very much. It was a little slow starting, but became an "I don't want to put it down" book. The history in the story was very interesting. The 1500's was a time of intrigue and danger. Things that we take for granted (reading, buying books, etc) were rare in the time frame of the story. It made me more appreciative of being able to read and having books to read.

    What could be better that a book about a book?
  • Jean (Richmond Heights OH)


    Venice is one of my favorite European cities!
    Luciano, the main character, is appealing and sympathetic because of his loyalty and goodness towards both his human and feline companions. The author captures the special feeling of Venice through its food and by its architecture.

    On the downside, there are a few parts where careful editing and cutting of wordiness would have benefited the flow of the story. As far as the central concern of the book, which is the secrets contained in the Book of Mischief, it promises more than it delivers. But overall it’s an engaging read.
  • Kathy (Alamo CA)


    The Book of Unholy Mischief
    I especially enjoyed the book because I just returned from a wonderful week in Italy, four days of which were in Venice. I love to cook and I love history and I LOVE when good over evil prevails such as in Luciano's character. Doing the right thing is something that is rare today.

    The story has lingered in my mind long after completion. A lovely story and very well written. It had every thing included .... excellent character development, humor, romance intrigue, morality. A thank you to the author for creating such
    an interesting story!
  • Susan (Spokane WA)


    The Book of Unholy Mischief
    I enjoyed this book. It reminded me, in some ways, of another mystery set in modern times in the Middle East searching for a similar book.

    One chapter (The Book of Amato) seemed out of place. Most of the story flowed forward and this one was the narrator suddenly as an adult talking to another about his maestro. While it helped to have more information about the maestro, it led me to expect more flashbacks.

    A good book for Ms. Newmark's first novel.
  • Christine (Weedsport NY)


    The Book of Unholy Mischief
    I absolutely loved this book. I savored and and read it as slowly as possible so as not to miss a thing. The plot is original, the main character is endearing, the descriptions of renaissance Venice transported me seamlessly back to that time. The contemporary themes of church and politics, power and corruption, rationalism and superstition are the background for the human foibles of love, greed, temptation and betrayal. I would recommend this book to anyone and I think it would make a great choice for book club discussion as well.
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