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Iain Pears was born in 1955, educated at Wadham College, Oxford and won the Getty Scholarship to Yale University. He has worked as a journalist, an art historian and a television consultant. He is the author of many books, including the bestselling An Instance of the Fingerpost and The Dream Of Scipio.
He lives with his wife and son in Oxford.
This is a captivating adventure story with huge heart and dazzling imaginative power, from the best-selling author of An Instance of the Fingerpost. Three interlocking worlds. Four people looking for answers. But who controls the future - or the past? In the basement of a professor's house in 1960s Oxford, fifteen-year-old Rosie goes in search of a missing cat - and instead finds herself in a different world. Anterwold is a sun-drenched land of storytellers, prophecies and ritual. But is this world real - and what happens if she decides to stay? Meanwhile, in a sterile laboratory, a rebellious scientist is trying to prove that time does not even exist - with potentially devastating consequences.
Featured on The TV Book Club on More4 on 25 July 2010. Shortlisted for the inaugural Walter Scott Prize for historical fiction 2010. A brilliantly plotted novel tracing back through John Stones’s life in three distinct segments allowing the reader to slowly unravel the mystery behind John’s death at the beginning of the novel. An exceptional book, both fascinating and gripping.
Coming straight into paperback only, a beautifully produced book with flaps and coloured pictures of some of the paintings brushed over in this extraordinary monologue. Powerful, erudite, menacing, dark, disturbing and strangely gripping, this is a short (224 pages), atmospheric, psychological mystery. Set in the early 20th century, a once feted artist, self-exiled, paints the portrait of his old mentor, a renowned critic and so their lives unfold with startling revelations. I was totally enthralled throughout. It is extraordinarily good.Comparison: Sarah Waters, Ian McEwan, A S Byatt.Similar this month: None, but try Gerard Woodward or Tash Aw.
Set in Oxford in the 1660s - a time and place of great intellectual, religious, scientific and political ferment - this remarkable novel centres around a young woman, Sarah Blundy, who stands accused of the murder of Robert Grove, a fellow of New College. Four witnesses describe the events surrounding his death: Marco da Cola, a Venetian Catholic intent on claiming credit for the invention of blood transfusion;Jack Prescott, the son of a supposed traitor to the Royalist cause, determined to vindicate his father; John Wallis, chief cryptographer to both Cromwell and Charles II, a mathematician, theologian and master spy; and Anthony Wood, the famous Oxford antiquary. Each one tells their version of what happened but only one reveals the extraordinary truth. Brilliantly written, utterly convincing, gripping from the first page to the last, An Instance of the Fingerpost is a magnificent tour de force.