The Relic Master: A Novel by Christopher Buckley

By Christopher Buckley

From New York occasions bestselling writer Christopher Buckley, "one of the funniest writers within the English language" (Tom Wolfe), a compelling and hilarious event that includes a sixteenth-century relic hunter and his ally, Albrecht Dürer, who conspire to forge the Shroud of Turin.
The 12 months is 1517. Dismas is a relic hunter: person who procures "authentic" spiritual relics for prosperous and influential consumers. His most crucial consumers are Frederick the clever, Elector of Saxony and soon-to-be Cardinal Albrecht of Mainz. whereas Frederick is attracted to the hot writing of Martin Luther, Albrecht pursues the monetary and political merits of faith and seeks to shop for a cardinalship in the course of the promoting of indulgences. while Albrecht's objectives elevate his calls for for grander and extra marketable relics, Dismas and his artist pal Dürer conspire to fabricate a shroud to promote to the unsuspecting noble. regrettably Dürer's reckless satisfaction exposes Albrecht's newly obtained shroud as a faux, so Albrecht places Dismas and Dürer within the custody of 4 loutish mercenaries and sends all of them to thieve Christ's burial fabric (the Shroud of Chambéry), Europe's so much celebrated relic.

On their trip to Savoy the place the Shroud may be displayed, they conflict a lustful count number and are joined by way of a gorgeous woman apothecary. it's only once they succeed in their vacation spot that they become aware of they don't seem to be on my own of their intentions to obtain a relic of doubtful legitimacy. packed with attention-grabbing information about paintings, faith, politics and technological know-how; Vatican intrigue; and Buckley's signature wit, The Relic grasp is a delightfully wealthy and clever comedian event.

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In the NY hotel rm (they turn up again in Angst)—what good’s writing? ’’ Forgotten underlined three times, as if forgotten by three forgettings. To which add today the forgetting that followed upon these notes, interrupted for the time being by the finding of the ................. 16582$ $CH3 10-11-07 15:26:56 PS PAGE 35 post-it. Is this the fourth forgetting? How many forgettings does it take to forget, then to forget, then to forget about the forgetting? I remember the forgotten roses very well, backs straight him sprawled on the couch in room 91 them erect upright legs bunched together in the hotel vase saying we’ve been waiting for you red long-stemmed, showy, stout, vigorous roses, in the room I don’t see them as they are but for what they meant.

It was only many years later I noticed the Detail that gives us access to ‘‘The Metamorphosis’’ (‘‘Die Verwandlung’’) though it is perfectly obvious in the entryway where it vegetates and stinks, the eternal cadaver posted as a warning to the reader. But as it doesn’t call out or moan or squeak the avid visitor sweeps indifferently past the prophetic vignette and throws himself into the front room from which he doesn’t emerge alive. If only you’d read the warning Nothing wouldn’t have happened.

I wept. I should have taken out the lens. 27 the eye-patch ................. 16582$ $CH2 10-11-07 15:26:55 PS PAGE 27 * * * This whole story turns on an eye, now one of the eyes of one character, now one of the eyes of the other. This comment is totally extraneous to the story’s events. It belongs to the Tale. To the Tale, that is, version 2000. Before this date a thin sheet of soundproof glass slipped itself between the story’s events and the Tale. So long as I wore a contact lens (that is, one lens) I couldn’t tell.

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