Ghostwalk

Ghostwalk

Book - 2007
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Random House, Inc.
A Cambridge historian, Elizabeth Vogelsang, is found drowned, clutching a glass prism in her hand. The book she was writing about Isaac Newton’s involvement with alchemy—the culmination of her lifelong obsession with the seventeenth century—remains unfinished. When her son, Cameron, asks his former lover, Lydia Brooke, to ghostwrite the missing final chapters of his mother’s book, Lydia agrees and moves into Elizabeth’s house—a studio in an orchard where the light moves restlessly across the walls. Soon Lydia discovers that the shadow of violence that has fallen across present-day Cambridge, which escalates to a series of murders, may have its origins in the troubling evidence that Elizabeth’s research has unearthed. As Lydia becomes ensnared in a dangerous conspiracy that reawakens ghosts of the past, the seventeenth century slowly seeps into the twenty-first, with the city of Cambridge the bridge between them.

Filled with evocative descriptions of Cambridge, past and present, of seventeenth-century glassmaking, alchemy, the Great Plague, and Newton’s scientific innovations, Ghostwalk centers around a real historical mystery that Rebecca Stott has uncovered involving Newton’s alchemy. In it, time and relationships are entangled—the present with the seventeenth century, and figures from the past with the love-torn twenty-first century woman who is trying to discover their secrets. A stunningly original display of scholarship and imagination, and a gripping story of desire and obsession, Ghostwalk is a rare debut that will change the way most of us think about scientific innovation, the force of history, and time itself.

Baker & Taylor
When the death of a Cambridge historian leaves her opus on Sir Isaac Newton and his alchemy unfinished, Lydia Brooke is called in to finish the book, only to find herself embroiled in a mystery in which the present becomes entangled with a past based on Newton's life and an investigation into four suspicious deaths that took place in seventeenth-century Cambridge. A first novel. 75,000 first printing.

Blackwell North Amer
Cambridge, 2003: Cameron Brown, the son of a reclusive historian, discovers his mother's body floating in the muddy waters of the river that runs through her orchard. In her hand, she clutches an antique glass prism.
The book she was writing, the fruit of a lifetime's obsession with the seventeenth century and the story of Isaac Newton as an alchemist, remains unfinished. Elizabeth Vogelsang's findings look set to follow her to the grave.
Lydia Brooke, Elizabeth's friend and Cameron's former lover, returns to Cambridge for the funeral. When Cameron asks Lydia to ghost-write the missing chapter of his mother's book she agrees, and moves into Elizabeth's house - a strange, triangular-shaped studio full of books and papers where the light moves restlessly across the walls.
Soon Lydia comes to see that the shadow of violence that has fallen across present-day Cambridge may have its origins in the past, and that the secrets Elizabeth unearthed are bleeding through into the present. Lydia finds herself entangled, not only with Cameron, but also with a series of unexplained seventeenth-century deaths, a network of alchemists and a ghostly figure intent on sabotaging her work.

Baker
& Taylor

When the death of a Cambridge historian leaves her opus on Sir Isaac Newton unfinished, Lydia Brooke is called in to finish the book, only to find herself embroiled in a mystery in which the present becomes entangled with a past based on Newton's life.

Publisher: New York : Spiegel & Grau, c2007
Edition: 1st U.S. ed
ISBN: 9780385521079
9780385521062
0385521065
Branch Call Number: Fiction Sto
Characteristics: 304 p. ; 25 cm

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falconroom
Jul 17, 2012

No one has brought up the fact that the author herself has uncovered a real mystery concerning Isaac Newton's involvement in alchemy, the closely researched Trinity deaths & the elusive 17th century mathematician & fellow of King's College, Ezekiel Foxcroft. Her suspicions about Newton are fascinating & believable; her post-novel information on Newton including his list of his own sins, a well-written time line and very useful bibliography about Newton & other related subjects such as the Great Plague made me want to do some of my own sleuthing. I am a believer, Professor Stott!

hermlou Nov 29, 2011

Well-written book about a woman finishing a biography of Isaac Newton for the biographer who drowned suspiciously. Stott intertwines a present-day love story with an ancient mystery. Most of all I enjoyed reading about Newton and how driven he was to experiment with light and color, even as the plague was approaching Cambridge.

samdog123 Oct 31, 2011

The reviews were good for this book, which is a historical mystery loosely based on Isacc Newton including his alchemy and tenure at Cambridge University. The modern day is juxtaposed with the past quite well. An enjoyable read, if a little predictable.

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