From New York Times best-selling author Christopher Buckley, "one of the funniest writers in the English language" (Tom Wolfe), a compelling and hilarious adventure featuring a 16th-century relic hunter and his best friend, Albrecht Dürer, who conspire to forge the Shroud of Turin.
The year is 1517. Dismas is a relic hunter: one who procures "authentic" religious relics for wealthy and influential clients. His two most important patrons are Frederick the Wise, elector of Saxony; and soon-to-be Cardinal Albrecht of Mainz. While Frederick is drawn to the recent writing of Martin Luther, Albrecht pursues the financial and political benefits of religion and seeks to buy a cardinalship through the selling of indulgences. When Albrecht's ambitions increase his demands for grander and more marketable relics, Dismas and his artist friend, Dürer, conspire to manufacture a shroud to sell to the unsuspecting noble. Unfortunately Dürer's reckless pride exposes Albrecht's newly acquired shroud as a fake, so Albrecht puts Dismas and Dürer in the custody of four loutish mercenaries and sends them all to steal Christ's burial cloth (the Shroud of Chambéry), Europe's most celebrated relic.
On their journey to Savoy, where the Shroud will be displayed, they battle a lustful count and are joined by a beautiful female apothecary. It is only when they reach their destination that they realize they are not alone in their intentions to acquire a relic of dubious legitimacy. Filled with fascinating details about art, religion, politics, and science; Vatican intrigue; and Buckley's signature wit, The Relic Master is a delightfully rich and intelligent comic adventure.
©2015 Christopher Taylor Buckley (P)2015 Simon & Schuster
"[James] Langton carries the narrative portions of the audiobook well with strong projection and great pacing. His pronunciations of German, Latin, and other languages roll smoothly into the story. His character voices are unique, consistent, and well chosen in tone." (AudioFile)
Christopher Buckley has written a marvelous medieval tale filled with unforgettable characters and a must-turn-the-page-plot, loaded with interesting historical factoids although a work of fiction, and hilarious dialogue and scenes. I read it in a day and was sorry it ended.
A cheeky tale of a relic master, a painter, a fake shroud of Christ, another fake shroud, a quest, a maiden and a couple of bawdy soldiers. Although a bit slow to start, it's intelligent and peopled with hilarious characters. Stick with it until the quest begins and you won't regret it.
I gave this book 2 hours...but it just couldn't get me into the story or into the narration. reccomend you try the narration sample before you by...the narrator isn't bad, but combined with the story, it was just lacking.
This is exactly why I like audio books. The story itself is great fun: full of events that are improbable, impossible, and endlessly engaging -- kind of like Princess Bride, in a way. James Langton deserves a special call-out: His performance is one of the best I've heard. I'll definitely be looking into other books he's read.
This book is perfectly balanced for me. The time and place are interesting and underrepresented in other books. The characters are really lively and relatable. The story is clear and and satisfying in flow.The performance is great for any activity, sports, commuting or active listening. Just the best audiobook I've ever heard. It's also quite concise. I'm actually sad it is finished.
Skewered the Catholic Church and bordered on offensive but pulled back from the edge with the heroes being the real small c catholics.
From Buckley I expected a satire, and got what appeared to be a historical novel.... Although not as pointed as Dan Brown, a similar type of plot.... Not anything like his political satires that kept me chuckling in the past.... Not a bad read on my way back and forth to work....
Reformations are much too nasty for the squeamish. Had we waited there would have been no WASPs. Buckley has written a splendid lampoon of the Shroud of Turin and attempts to steal it in the early 1500s. A sharp turn near the end is a bit of a surprise.
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