An old homicide secret in line with genuine events.
Who would wish to homicide the world’s most famed thinker?
Turns out: approximately everyone.
In 1649, Descartes used to be invited by way of the Queen of Sweden to turn into her court docket thinker. although he used to be the world’s top thinker, his lifestyles had via this aspect fallen aside. He used to be fifty three, penniless, dwelling in exile in Amsterdam, by myself. With a lot trepidation yet now not a lot selection, he arrived in Stockholm in mid-October.
Shortly thereafter he used to be dead.
Pneumonia, they stated. yet who may possibly think that? there have been simply too many people of curiosity who desired to see Descartes useless, and for too many purposes. That such a lot of of those folks have been in Stockholm—thanks to the Gala the Queen used to be throwing to have fun the top of the bad Thirty Years' War—made the legit tale all of the much less believable. demise by way of poisoning used to be the unofficial note at the cobblestone.
Enter Adrien Baillet. A likeable misfit with a mysterious backstory, he arrives simply because the French Ambassador desperately wishes an neutral Frenchman to end up that Descartes died of common causes—lest the “murder” in Lutheran Sweden of France’s nice Catholic thinker set off colicky French boy-King Louis XIV to reignite that lousy conflict. Baillet hesitatingly concurs to enquire Descartes’s loss of life, figuring out that if—or when—he screws up, he can be in my view liable for the War’s Thirty-First 12 months.
But fixing the secret of Descartes’s loss of life (Baillet quickly learns) calls for first fixing the secret of Descartes’s existence, with all its harmful secrets and techniques ... None of it is simple, as approximately everyone seems to be a suspect and not anyone might be depended on. Nor does it support that he needs to do all of it below the menacing gaze of Carolus Zolindius, the terrifying Swedish Chancellor with the unusually intimidating limp.
But Baillet by some means perseveres, mind-blowing every body as he figures all of it out—all the best way to the explosive end.