La Muta, "the mute woman." Amidst a country rocked by scandal and
corruption, inhabitants of the idyllic city of Urbino, Italy, birthplace of
Raphael, are more concerned with a sudden outbreak of miracles than with
politics. But what unspeakable secret lies hidden in Raphael's enigmatic
painting? Its restoration will drive a living mute to a shocking act of
violence and spark an investigation into a nearly forgotten war crime and a
series of events that will shatter the silence gripping this community
Both a mesmerizing thriller and a passionate exploration of the power of
truth to effect reconciliation and restore faith, Waking Raphael spins a
tantalizing web of silence and lies to recreate an Italy where the romantic
and the violent, the comic and the tragic, are spellbindingly interwoven.
Forbes uses the conventions of the romance and the thriller, transforming and discarding them at will, to illuminate the mysterious connections between past and present and bring a pair of ardent and uncommonly appealing heroines to life.
Booklist - Misha Stone
Numerous digressions on such matters as the mechanics of hoax miracles and Italian cuisine add flavor and depth to the novel but also diminish the suspense. A good choice for fans of Arturo Perez-Reverte and Iain Pears or for the Italy-bound.
Library Journal - Christine Perkins
The Da Vinci Code meets Captain Corelli's Mandolin in this top-notch literary thriller.....With touches of magic realism, Forbes (Bombay Ice; Fish, Blood and Bone) adds mystery to a novel that combines art, Catholicism, government corruption, political history, and a dash of romance. Vivid scenery and richly detailed characters add depth. Highly recommended.
Starred review. The characters are richly drawn, from the suave count to the pig farmer. Entranced readers will find the secrets of San Rocco uncovered, layer by layer, not unlike Charlotte's painstaking restoration of Raphael's painting. There's more than a touch of magic realism involved, interwoven with fascinating facts about history, religion, painting, miracles and more. This novel will captivate and delight.
Recent Reader Reviews
Rated of 5
by Andre confused? if you read this book you will be confused and bored. No thriller at all. More like a phonebook.
Rated of 5
by Erica Minchella Waking Raphael This book was a terrible disappointment. All that I had read about the book indicated that it would be a fascinating, complex, if not thrilling, story. Instead it was a great deal of allusion, innuendo and foreshadowing, leading to a climax that... Read More
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