The Moor’s Account: Laila Lalani

History is written by the victors, as the saying goes. What we know of the conquest—or the invasion—of the Americas tends to come from those who conquered the land. This book gives another perspective—the narrator, Mustafa ibn Muhammad ibn Abdussalam al-Zamori, is among the Spanish conquistadores, but not one of them. He is different, both …

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Tombland: CJ Sansom

I wasn’t going to write this, since I’ve already reviewed a book in the Shardlake series (Dark Fire). But Tombland is a little different—it is not just a murder mystery but also describes a little-known event in English history. The series centres around Matthew Shardlake, a hunchback lawyer in London, who used to work for …

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The Man Who Loved Dogs: Leonardo Padura

Translated from Spanish by Anna Kushner “If the social dream and economic utopia supporting it had become corrupt to the core, what remained of the greatest experiment man had ever dreamed of?” It is easy to forget today how seductive the idea of communism was for generations of intellectuals the world over. They were drawn …

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