For Fans Of
Do you believe in ghosts? I didn't until I spent the night in a hotel in the centre of Prague. As I was falling asleep, I was visited by a haunting. It was the ghost of a 17th century man who was desperate to have his story told. This is the story of how a poor barber from Prague learned, too late, the meaning of his life after running away from it, and how he was able to touch the life of a frustrated and alienated middle-aged woman living in the 21st century. It's a mystery, in every sense of the word.
“A beautiful and thought-provoking novel….”
Bohemian Mystery is an intriguing novel, which opens in medieval Prague, a
city at the heart of Bohemia, with its unique source of Moldavite, a green
gemstone laid down by a meteorite at the dawn of history. Sylvia, the
protagonist, has an instinctive affinity to the city, which is where her own
mother was born. But in modern Britain this is at odds with her burgeoning
career at a prestigious girls’ boarding school - an institution steeped in
hierarchy and eccentricity, which Clare Blanchard describes with an
irresistible meld of humour and satire. Woven into her tale are two stories of
struggle to retain sanity. One of Sylvia’s colleagues suffers a nervous
breakdown from overwork, and her mother develops Alzheimer`s. However,
gradually her affection for Prague draws her back again and again and she
discovers that there are unexpected links between the old city and those
ancient Etruscan civilisations that instigated the spread of culture and
architecture across continents. She learns also that many of these legends
stretch back to biblical times, and that there are even connections pulling at
her own roots. Her life and purpose are transformed by these revelations.
Bohemian Mystery takes you on a satisfying journey, providing food for
thought long after the book is closed - a journey well worth travelling.
Reviewed by Brenda Parker, author of The Cilento Dove
and Anya Paris