A Conspiracy of Paper

A Conspiracy of Paper

A Novel

Book - 2000
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THE HISTORICAL THRILLER OF THE YEAR Benjamin Weaver is an outsider in eighteenth-century London: a Jew among Christians; a ruffian among aristocrats; a retired pugilist who, hired by London's gentry, travels through the criminal underworld in pursuit of debtors and thieves. InA Conspiracy of Paper, Weaver investigates a crime of the most personal sort: the mysterious death of his estranged father, a notorious stockjobber. To find the answers, Weaver must contend with a desperate prostitute who knows too much about his past, relatives who remind him of his alienation from the Jewish faith, and a cabal of powerful men in the world of British finance who have hidden their business dealings behind an intricate web of deception and violence. Relying on brains and brawn, Weaver uncovers the beginnings of a strange new economic order based on stock speculation--a way of life that poses great risk for investors but real danger for Weaver and his family. In the tradition ofThe Alienistand written with scholarly attention to period detail,A Conspiracy of Paperis one of the wittiest and most suspenseful historical novels in recent memory, as well as a perceptive and beguiling depiction of the origin of today's financial markets. In Benjamin Weaver, author David Liss has created an irresistibly appealing protagonist, one who parlays his knowledge of the emerging stock market into a new kind of detective work.
Publisher: New York : Random House, c2000
Edition: 1st ed. --
ISBN: 9780375502927
0375502920
Branch Call Number: FIC Liss 3558ad 1
Characteristics: 442 p

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I have recommended David Liss's first book to library customers more than another book, and only one or two people said they didn't like it. Most of them came back wanting more.


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lukasevansherman
Mar 19, 2016

A murder mystery set in 18th century London with a Jewish ex-boxer as its hero and the early days of the stock market as its theme. Writer David Liss wrote his dissertation on finance in the 18th century novel so he knows what he's talking about. The mystery plot may be conventional, but the setting and the theme is quite original. While not necessary, I think it will increase your enjoyment if you've read some 18th century novels by Fielding and Smollett. It is a little long, but, then again, so were most of those novels. A thriller of rare intelligence and depth. Followed by several sequels.

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marciemcgowan63
Jun 01, 2013

I love David Liss' books. They are set in historical time periods and I learn from his books.
David Liss focuses his intricate tale of murder, money, and conspiracy on Benjamin Weaver, exboxer, self-described "protector, guardian, bailiff, constable-for-hire, and thief-taker," and son of a Portuguese Jewish "stock-jobber."

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gingertrow
Mar 16, 2013

Though set in the early 18th century, this well-written historical thriller will spur you to recognize all the characteristics of today's recent casino banking and financial bubble behavior. It's all happened before....also interesting look at the world of the "city" and the early stock exchange of London, as well as the treatment of jews in 18th century Britain--a topic I had no familiarity with before reading this hard-to-put-down thriller.

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PAIGE CHERNOW
Dec 26, 2012

I liked the setting and character: Benjamin Weaver, a lapsed Jew and ex-boxer, weaves his way through both seamy and well-off society in 18th century London. The plot, too, was interesting at first: the early days of the stock market and an unsolved murder, possibly related to financial deception. However, the plot dragged after awhile, and it soon became clear that nothing would become clear. Still, I liked the atmosphere: a large cast of scheming, shady ruffians (both wealthy and poor), liberally spiced with violent brawls. Also, glimpses of life in the Jewish community, and depictions of the early stock market - an intricately constructed house of card based on promise and probability but undercut by deceit. In the end, though, I wasn't entirely certain what had happened with the murder plot, nor did I care much.

Jeremy410 Dec 21, 2011

Somewhat slow moving historical thriller of 18th. century London. But worth the effort as it picks up in the latter half. Period language may hinder some readers. Good insight into the difficulties faced by Jews in English society at that time. Main plot deals with a Jewish ex-boxer turned investigator who is trying to find out if his father's death was an accident or murder. The story takes place during the early years of the English stock market and involves a suspicion of forged investments documents.

lettercarrier Oct 14, 2011

paperback please

s
Sparkles76
Feb 23, 2009

David Liss writes a solid and compelling historical mystery that contains a unique hero and fascinating historical detail. I highly recommend this for those who like a more literary read.

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FavouriteFiction Oct 31, 2009

Former pugilist and Jew Benjamin Weaver investigates the death of his father, a notorious stockjobber. To find the answers Benjamin must delve into the world of the emerging stock market.

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FavouriteFiction Oct 31, 2009

Winner of the 2001 Edgar award for best first mystery novel.

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