The Mirror Thief (Paperback)

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“In this outstanding debut, three stories are linked by criminal pursuits and Venice -- not so much the actual place, but the idea of that place. In late 1500s Venice, Italy, a man schemes to steal the most guarded technology of the day -- a mirror; in 1950s Venice Beach, California, a thief discovers a mysterious text that seems to have unusual insights about that stolen mirror; and in 2015, a soldier pursues the thief in The Venetian hotel in Las Vegas to retrieve the book about the mirror. As the stories draw together, Seay's thrilling novel dazzles at every turn. Unexpected and amazing, The Mirror Thief will leave readers breathless.”
— Jeremy Ellis (W), Brazos Bookstore, Houston, TX

Description


A New York Times NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR
An NPR BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
A Publishers Weekly BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
 
A globetrotting, time-bending, wildly entertaining masterpiece hailed by the New York Times Book Review as "Audaciously well written … the book I was raving about to my friends before I'd even finished it."
 
Set in three different eras, and in three different locations—all, coincidentally, named Venice—this “startling, beautiful gem of a book” (NPR) calls to mind David Mitchell and Umberto Eco in its mix of entertainment and literary bravado.
 
The core story is set in sixteenth-century Venice, where, on the island of Murano, the famed makers of Venetian glass were perfecting one of the old world's most wondrous inventions: the mirror. An object of glittering yet fearful fascinationwas it reflecting simple reality, or something more spiritually revealing?the Venetian mirrors were state-of-the-art technology, subject to industrial espionage by desirous sultans and royals world-wide. Thus, for the skilled craftsmen that made them, any attempt to leave the island—to steal the technology—was a crime punishable by death. One man, howevera world-weary war hero with nothing to losehas a scheme he thinks will allow him to outwit the city's terrifying enforcers of the edict, the ominous Council of Ten . . .
 
Meanwhile, in two other VenicesVenice Beach, California, circa 1958, and the Venice casino in Las Vegas, circa todaytwo other schemers launch similarly dangerous plans to get away with a secret . . .

All three stories weave together into a spell-binding tour de force that is impossible to put downan old-fashioned, stay-up-all-night novel that, in the end, returns the reader to a stunning conclusion in the original Venice . . . and the bedazzled sense of having read a truly original and thrilling work of art.

About the Author


MARTIN SEAY is the executive secretary for the village of Wheeling, Illinois. His work has appeared in The Believer, Joyland, Gargoyle, The Gettysburg Review, and elsewhere. The Mirror Thief is his first novel.

Praise For…


A New York Times NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR
An NPR BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
A Publishers Weekly BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR

 
"Audaciously well written … the book I was raving about to my friends before I'd even finished it."The New York Times Book Review
 
"[A] wondrous debut, a deliciously intricate, centuries-spanning tripartite tale of money and mysticism … Mr. Seay has conjured his own kind of sorcery, a sophisticated thriller that keeps the pages turning even as it teases the mind.”The Wall Street Journal
 
"Transfixing ...The Mirror Thief is a startling, beautiful gem of a book that at times approaches a masterpiece.”—NPR
 
"Compared recently to the work of David Mitchell, Seay’s big, genre-ish The Mirror Thief is actually better than most novels by that author.”Flavorwire
 

"Hugely entertaining.”The Daily Mail
 
"A twisting, turning, metaphysical journey that’s sure to please fans of David Mitchell and Umberto Eco. Those are exalted names, but the depth of these stories and the straightforward artistry of Seay’s writing will woo those looking for a true literary experience.”B&N Review
 
"It is easy to see why Martin Seay’s debut novel, The Mirror Thief, has been compared to David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas, and comparisons to Elmore Leonard and Umberto Eco are also justified for this substantial and richly imagined novel, spanning three time periods and two continents … A transporting and original novel.”BookBrowse
 

The Mirror Thief establishes Seay as an impressive new voice to watch.”Buzzfeed
 
"Masterful and mysterious."Las Vegas Weekly
 
"The weirdest and most ambitious novel of 2016 thus far … a literary, speculative, mystical masterwork."Chicago Review of Books
 
"A true delight, a big, beautiful cabinet of wonders that is by turns an ominous modern thriller, a supernatural mystery, and an enchanting historical adventure story … A splendid masterpiece, to be loved like a long-lost friend, an epic with near-universal appeal."
Publishers Weekly starred review
 
“Grandly entrancing … Shimmering with intimations of Hermann Hesse, Umberto Eco, and David Mitchell, Sheay’s house-of-mirrors novel is spectacularly accomplished and exciting.”
Booklist starred review
 
The Mirror Thief is a remarkable novel—magical, sweeping, epic, and monstrous. It is a tour de force of writing that defies all labels and genres, three interwoven stories that will draw you into worlds of mystery, crime, violence, and obsession. The Mirror Thief is a work to be savored if you have the discipline, but more likely devoured if, like me, you simply can’t put it down. An astonishing debut novel of immense literary depth.”
—Douglas Preston, #1 bestselling co-author of The Monster of Florence and The Cabinet of Curiosities
 
“A 600-page thrill ride across three centuries and two continents ... Part crime thriller and part meditation on poetry, with unexpected plot twists and references to famous figures as diverse as the French dramatist Antonin Artaud and Jay Leno...An impressive feat of imagination.”Bookpage
 
The Mirror Thief is a perfect amalgam of the sort of pleasure I hope to get out of ‘literary’ fiction and the pleasure I get out of a beautifully plotted potboiler: it’s a page-turner I can’t put down in which the sentences are breathtakingly gorgeous. Every sentence of this novel is charged with a living energy that seems to come from the clouds. In scope, it reminds me of Roberto Bolaño—in execution, of Elmore Leonard or Richard Price. It is a novel of ideas that still knows how to describe a slot machine in such an evocative way that it makes me swoon. It is a deeply impressive work of art.”
—Benjamin Hale, author of The Evolution of Bruno Littlemore and The Fat Artist and Other Stories
 
“Readers, beware, as you embark on this journey through three Venices at three remarkably vivid moments in history. Like a card shark, a street hustler, a kidnapper waiting in ancient shadows, Martin Seay will trick you, dazzle you, spirit you away. I invite you to try your luck with The Mirror Thief; you can’t lose.”
—Zachary Dodson, author of Bats of the Republic
Product Details
ISBN: 9781612195599
ISBN-10: 1612195598
Publisher: Melville House
Publication Date: April 11th, 2017
Pages: 592
Language: English

How to read more

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How To Read More

If you love reading, but for some reason you read less and less, know that everything is fine. It happens.
Our lives today have so many things that distract us - how can we not put books away when all these movies, TV shows, YouTube videos, social networks and endless surfing in online stores are around ...
Yes, it's really hard to resist, but you certainly can!

In this article, we want to share with you some tips to read more often and more successfully.
These are some notes and some practices that we have collected for our SUNDOG BOOKS readers club.
And maybe it will bring more books into your life!

Why do we want/need to read more?

To start reading more, you have to understand why you need it.
And you will be surprised, but your goals can be quite varied:

- for work
If you read a lot on duty, then you definitely need to speed up the process. The logic here is simple: read faster → work faster → more time for books for yourself.

- for education
you need this for your educational career or sometimes you just want to read to learn. And, with all the new alternative ways to gain knowledge (podcasts, online courses and videos), the book still does an excellent job of this task too.

- for self-development
all exercises for increasing speed, one way or another, improve cognition and memory.

- for fun
because good books always = fun!

Book lovers have an additional special goal for reading more often. If you love literature, you will understand what we mean: you want to catch everything - to follow modern literature, and not forget about the classics, look into non-fiction and children's publications. And there’s so much you want to reread! The goals are ambitious, but attainable if you read a lot.

 

And so - How to read more:
We will tell you about the methods that we use ourselves. Perhaps some will suit you as well.

 

15 minutes a day

You've probably already heard this rule: if you want to start a healthy habit, devote 15 minutes a day to it. Once upon a time, we all read irregularly, in jumps and starts. Sometimes we cannot open a book we have begun weeks ago. Therefore, you should decide to create a rule: devote at least 15 minutes a day to reading. Try reading before bed, or maybe during lunchtime, or even when you are having your morning coffee.

You will see progress immediately. You will notice that almost always your 15 minutes will grow into half an hour or more. But the most remarkable thing is that in three weeks your hands themselves will be looking for a book.

 

50 First Pages
This method advises - If the book hasn't hooked you from the first 50 pages, put it aside! Life is too short to read uninteresting books.

It is necessary to change the approach to books. At first it will be hard for you to stop and put the book down. Even if we put the book away, it will seem to reproach us from the shelf, mocking us as quitters. But in the end we should come to one simple thought: if it doesn’t hook your attention, you should not force yourself to read it.

***Fifty pages is not a bad test. Not the most objective, but definitely effective. It helps to determine whether it interests you or not, and whether to spend time on things that do not excite.

 

Reader's Diary

This should be used to improve the quality of reading - to make it more conscious. For starters, it can be a simple notebook with headings:

  • Author
  • Year of publication
  • Main characters
  • Scene
  • Plot
  • Theme
  • Quotes

And, yes, a reader's diary is not a thing about quantity, but about quality. But, it can also motivate. When you open your diary and start looking at quotes (especially quotes), you immediately really want to read.

 

Maybe a Book Bet?
Several people can participate. Members of the betting group can come from friends, family, and also your colleagues. And of course you can set your own rules for participation, but we'll give you a simple example:

Everyone in the group should read and review a book over the course of a month with weekly updates. Anyone who does not finish a review buys the book for all other participants for the next month.

 

Speed Reading

Another effective way to increase the amount you read is speed reading. The logic here is simple - the faster you read, the more books you can enjoy.

*There are many online courses on speed reading, and you can also study on your own using instructional books. But, it is worth noting that this is a serious learning process that will require some effort on your part.

 

Outcome

Reading every day is quite attainable, the main thing is to try to make it a habit.
Sometimes, instead of heading for Facebook, try opening a book and soon you won’t even remember why you needed to wander around social media.
And also - don't forget about audiobooks. They are a cool way to take the load off your eyes sometimes and just immerse yourself in the story. Some books are really strong in voice acting.

 
 
 

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