Summary and book reviews of Music of The Spheres by Elizabeth Redfern

Music of The Spheres

by Elizabeth Redfern

Music of The Spheres
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  • First Published:
    Jul 2001, 400 pages
    Paperback:
    Aug 2002, 400 pages

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Book Summary

In the London of 1795, intrigue and death walk the dark streets. England is at war with France and espionage is rampant - and it is the job of John Absey to catch these spies. Intricately plotted and beautifully paced.

In the London of 1795, intrigue and death walk the dark streets. England is at war with its neighbor and nemesis, France, and espionage is rampant. It is the job of Jonathan Absey at the Home Office to catch these spies, but his mind is elsewhere, his dreams haunted by the still unsolved murder of his fifteen-year-old daughter in these same streets. Desperately pursuing both investigations, he stumbles across a strange society of astronomers called the Company of Titius who are on a furious search of their own: to discover a long-lost star in the wide black sky. Soon, as he digs into their arcane world, their quest begins to merge with his own, and Absey finds himself discovering more than he had ever imagined - not only about spies and murderers but also about celestial numbers and the making of codes; about passions as unnatural as they are obsessive; and about the bonds of family...and the lengths we will go to preserve them.

With The Music of the Spheres, Elizabeth Redfern emerges as an evocative and elegant writer of startling power, her gifts for characterization, atmosphere, narrative, and rich moral drama marking her as a new star in her own right.

Chapter 1

Algol is the name of the winking demon star, Medusa of the skies; fair but deadly to look on, even for one who is already dying.

Ah, the bright stars of the night. Almost they obliterate the clear white pain. A thousand stars shining in the ether; but no dazzling newcomer. And so little time left, so little time...

Yet still two-faced Medusa laughs from behind the clouds, demanding homage. Homage, Medusa, or a sword, a blade sharper than death itself.

The wind stirs. Night clouds obscure the universe. A lower music now, a different kind of death.

No stars tonight, my love.

No Selene.


IT WAS PAST ELEVEN OF THE CLOCK ON A RAIN-WASHED JUNE evening when Auguste de Montpellier rose from her bed and realized that her brother, Guy, had gone from the house. Because he was not always responsible for his actions, and because he was, like her, a stranger in an alien land, she felt the beginnings of fear: a familiar fear that touched her skin with cold fingers.

"Guy," ...

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Reviews

Media Reviews

Publishers Weekly

This British first novel is a historical thriller in the vein of Caleb Carr and Iain Pears, with maximum melodramatic coloring.

Library Journal

Redfern has a deep understanding of this historical period and uses contemporary epigraphs to good effect. Strongly recommended.

Kirkus Reviews

Starred Review. The Music of the Spheres demands an attentive ear, even as its multiple harmonies enchant and satisfy the senses

Booklist

In Redfern's historically immaculate first novel, it is as if John le Carre has gone Age of Enlightenment on us; while in the novel's second story line about a brutal serial murderer, it is as if Silence of the Lambs has been reset in the Napoleonic era.

Author Blurb Martha Grimes
Intricately plotted, beautifully paced, The Music of the Spheres is an elegant historical novel rich in detail, at times Dickensian in its description of London. Elizabeth Redfern has made an exciting debut.

Reader Reviews

Carolyn Goddette

music of the Spheres
I was impressed with this novel! I am a voracious reader, especially of historical novels. I thought this book was very well written, held my interest all the way through, and had a beautiful, touching ending. I am a musician also, which is why I ...   Read More

Donna Volger

Ms. Redfern's two books are equal to the P.D. James mysteries and that's saying a lot from me as Ms. James has been my favorite for years..Ms. Redern's books are filled with suspense and she has such detail about so many things..She must do ...   Read More

Ellen Herbert

was so sorry to see the last pages. simply perfect for chilly nights in front of the fireplace.
intricatly plotted and wonderful characters.
cant wait for the next offering from Ms. Redfern

Andy Nethercoat

I'm only half way through the book at the moment. I logged on to the net to find out what other books by Elizabeth Redfern I could find to order for when I've finished Music of the Spheres but alas this is her first novel. Such an accomplished book ...   Read More

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