O Mercador Português
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O Mercador Português

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  4,285 ratings  ·  484 reviews
Depois do sucesso de A Conspiração de Papel, David Liss volta a recuar no tempo para um momento chave na História: a Amesterdão de 1659, capital do comércio europeu, onde a perfídia impera e até os melhores amigos têm segredos.

Na primeira bolsa de valores do mundo, as fortunas são ganhas e perdidas num instante, e Miguel Lourenço, um judeu que fugiu de Lisboa devido à Inqu...more
Capa Mole, 336 pages
Published March 16th 2007 by Saída de Emergência (first published November 7th 2002)
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Sometimes I'm wrong about a book though I hate to admit it. I was almost 100 pages into The Coffee Trader and moaning that I wasn't enjoying the read but had to finish it as it was a book group choice. I knuckled down finally and was pleasantly surprised when very quickly the story just popped off the pages. When all was said and done I thoroughly relished the book, even going back to re-read parts of the beginning.

I honestly think what threw me is that The Coffee Trader is about commodity trad...more
Allie Whiteley
This isn't quite on a par with A Conspiracy of Paper (his first book), but it very nearly is. The action focuses on the grandfather of Benjamin Weaver (the central character in the aforementioned novel), Miguel Lienzo, a Portuguese Jew living in Amsterdam. At the opening of the novel (May 1659) he is seemingly on the verge of ruin and survives only because of the charity of his brother Daniel, in whose cellar he lodges. But then he gets wind of a wondrous new drink called coffee and it seems as...more
"I guess I'll read this one. It can't possibly be as good as his other two. It's about coffee. Who can write this much about coffee?"

"Ugggggghhhh it's about stocks in coffee. It's not even about coffee coffee?"

"It takes place in Amsterdam? Weed."

"So far this is better than I thought it would be."

"This main character is kind of a douche."

"So is everyone else in this book."

"How the hell does one pronounce Oude Kerk? Is Dutch hard? Think I could learn it? Do I want to learn it? I heard the Netherla...more
I waited a long time to read this book. It sat on my 'to read' list for a year or so and I took it off, put it back on, never quite sure if I wanted to fit it into my reading schedule.
While I am pleased to have finally conquered the book, finally got it read, I was bitterly disappointed by it.
I don't know if it was the great cover or not (as I have always regarded the cover of this edition as one of my favourites even before meeting the book in the flesh), but I really expected much more poetry...more
This book was fantastic on so many levels. Liss does an excellent job portraying 17th century Amsterdam, providing a view of a culture that has been considered famously tolerant - and shows the limit of that tolerance. This is an issue that has been famously re-examined recently, about how the Dutch really behaved during The War. And in the past decade, that famous tolerance has been stretched to the limit with the wave of Arab/Muslim immigrants. It's an issue that the Dutch have had to deal wit...more
For the most part I really enjoyed reading The Coffee Trader by David Liss. The main protagonist is Miguel, a Portuguese Jew, living in Amsterdam, and working as a broker in the emerging stock exchange. Miguel and a Dutch woman, Geertruid, scheme to corner the coffee market. Hampering there efforts are Solomon Parido, a wealthy member of the Jewish community, who harbors a grudge against Miguel, and Joachim Waagenaar, a Dutchman who lost everything in a financial deal Miguel brokered for him. Jo...more
This book is one of the best I have read, however I will say it fit my tastes as well if not better than any book I have picked up in a long, long time.
I enjoy the markets, love coffee, and these two interests played out very well in this story.

It's a historical look at the markets, and if you don't understand puts, calls, you may not enjoy as much. If you are a commodities trader I think you will be thrilled by this book.

However there is some anti semitic history in this book based on the perio...more
This is a very strong book to read. By that, this book has depth. As a historical novel, you want some glimpse into the world as it was so that you leave with some factual understanding of that period admidst the fiction. In Coffee Trader you learn a great deal about Amsterdam, the center of finance in the 1600's.

You also learn of the flourishing jewish community free of the inquisition and how that atrocious institution changed the attitudes of the people it persecuted to a degree. This is han...more
The Coffee Trader is a wonderful story of intrigue set on the exchange in 17th century Amsterdam. I would recommend the novel purely on its ability to draw the reader into this very specific historical setting, the world of Portuguese immigrant Jews living in this cosmopolitan trading community. Likewise, I would recommend it to any finance geeks for its detailed descriptions of how the Dutch markets functioned.

Going beyond its standing as historical fiction, however, the novel presents a fabul...more
Cool facts.

In 1723 a young officer in the Grench army, Gabriel Mathie de Clieu, carried one precious coffee plant in a glass-framed box as he headed for duty in Martinique. His ship was becalmed for many days in the mid-Atlantic, meeting a water shortage for the entire voyage. For more than a month de Clieu shared his frugal ration of life-giving water with the frail coffee tree. Arriving finally in Martinique, the Frenchman planted his treasure among some protective thorn bushes. By the beginn...more
never intended to return to David Liss so soon. No doubt, A Conspiracy of Paper was phenomenal -- but I have two Bernard Cornwell novels just awaiting to be read! There's something compelling about Liss' genre, though: I've never encountered a thriller set in the business world before, let alone one steeped in the exciting history of Age of Discovery-era Europe. The Coffee Trader is another contribution to that setting, though here Liss moves to Amsterdam, where young Miguel Lienzo -- the uncle...more
This was an interesting thriller/historical fiction novel about Amsterdam's commodities exchange in the late 1600s. The main character Miguel Lienzo took refuge in The Netherlands after living as a Secret Jew in Portugal where the force of the Inquisition had become too great a threat. Although Miguel was initially successful in Amsterdam’s markets, the novel begins with him juggling debts to his self-righteous brother as well as others in the community. Having lost his fortune in the sugar mark...more
A friend lent this book to me. If she hadn't included it in a stack of books, I would never have picked it up. As it was, I almost put it down as abandoned many times during reading. The only thing that kept me going to the end was the thought that I would have to say something about it when I returned the book!
The story takes place in Amsterdam in the 1700s. It's about the "exchange," basically the ancestor of Wall Street. So everyone's lying and conniving and making wagers based on rumors and...more
Kirsten McKeown
Multiply the business plotting of "Mad Men" by 10, put it into a Vermeer painting, take away the brandy snifters at working lunches and insert a mysteriously alluring brew called "coffee,"--and voila, you have the beginning scenes to a masterpiece stock exchange mystery set in Amsterdam in the 1600s. If you have read the Benjamin Weaver series by David Liss, this book predates those London hijinks--showcasing his father's fortunes as a Portuguese Jewish trader exiled by the Inquisition. Miguel h...more
"The Coffee Trader" takes place in 17th century Amsterdam, at the dawn of the coffee trade in Europe. The setting and characters are so well developed that you even find yourself rooting for some downright duplicitous folks. And the best part is that the story worked on me like coffee. I would lie down tired and once I started reading, I was wide awake. This was a clever, no brilliant, page-turner, and it was just what I needed after reading so much mediocre stuff (unintentionally, of course). I...more
A very interesting topic and a different location from the usual-Amsterdam, The netherlands. A group of Jewish refugees from the Inquisition in Portugal, have settled in the city where the Dutch are very open in their religious views. One of the refugees, a mna named Miguel becomes interested in making money by trading in coffee futures. The ups and doens in his life make for interesting reading, but I failed to see the mystery involved in the book. 3.5 stars.
A wonderful novel amongst the Jews of Amsterdam at the dawn of the 17th Century, refugees from the Spanish Inquisition and Eastern Europe who've come to the newly independent United Provinces (the Netherlands) to enjoy its unprecedented (if never easy) religious tolerance and the incredible opportunities and perils of the financial markets at the birthplace of modern global capitalism.

This being a well written novel, the financial transactions that serve as much of the action do not require any...more
Probably some spoilers in here for those intent on reading the book. The Coffee Trader provides a wonderful historical setting - Amsterdam in 1659. It involves the commodity exchange, the Portguese Jewish community escaped from the Inquisition and becoming prosperous among the Dutch, and the first arrival of coffee. The descriptions of coffee and its usefulness for business are wonderful (and made me go and prepare a thick cup of joe for myself). Miguel Lienzo, once bankrupted is trying to rema...more
“It rippled thickly in the bowl, dark and hot and uninviting. Miguel Lienzo picked it up and pulled it so close he almost dipped his nose into the tarry liquid. Holding the vessel still for an instant, he breathed in, pulling the scent deep into his lungs. The sharp odor of earth and rank leaves surprised him; it was like something an apothecary might keep in a chipped porcelain jar.”

David Liss is fast becoming a rival to my top historical fiction authors. I sat down with this book (luckily on...more
Since I've been to Amsterdam, it was great to read about places and landmarks that existed hundreds of years ago. A good story, with lots of historical details from clothing to housing to Jewish customs. It makes you think, what did people first think of coffee (mixing it with wine?), and considering they drank beer as a regular beverage, the caffeine must have really got their nerves jangling. I knocked off a star because I was getting confused over the puts and calls of the scheme but if you u...more
Nancy Oakes
It was good, not great, and I'd recommend it to people who are interested in the history of Jews in Europe during the Inquisition and beyond, or if you're interested in getting a down and dirty look at the way capitalism operates.

The whole time I was reading this I was thinking of this game I used to play with my kids when they were younger called "Diplomacy." In that game you set up alliances and made deals, but you didn't have to honor them, and so you never really knew who your friends were...more
With all my other obligations lately, I have been so tired that I have not been up to my usual readable self...

The Coffee Trader is keeping me engaged! During this story, Amsterdam has already emerged as the center of the world's trade, attracting merchants from every land of importance. This is the story of Miguel, and many other characters of Jewish decent, who escaped to Amsterdam from many countries for religious freedom. Amsterdam drew these immigrants into the trade and commodities busines...more
The novel moved so s...l...o...w! The build-up was slow, the story didn't take off until you were halfway through the book, and the climax was short and not worth the wait. The ending was predictable, except one small part that left me with my mouth literally hanging open, and the entire novel was over my head in terms and chattering about business, money, and commerce.
Miguel, a Jew merchant in Amsterdam, has recently struck out on the Exchange when his sugar deal went bad. Now, he's back in ac...more
sarah gilbert
The hum of Amsterdam in the 17th century had my heart whirring with excitement; the characters were complex and lead interesting, finance-tangled lives. Coffee is dear to me, and the trade of agricultural products through the ages is a fierce interest. Nice stock-market-floor action was intriguing, too. This book was surely a page-turner; I read the end all in a rush, up 'til 3 a.m. one day. But in the end I closed the book with great disappointment.

The author chose to dispatch with many of the...more
An excellent book recommended by a fellow book club member. It is set in 1659 Amsterdam and is about how coffee was brought to America. The businessmen and traders in London and Europe established coffee houses as opposed to taverns because coffee sobered the mind of man. Beer and wine had been the former beverage of business transactions. The descriptions of the market where the commodities were traded daily are vivid and alive with intrigue and deception. I felt as if I was there in Amsterdam...more
One thing I really like about this book is that not only that it tells a moral and gripping tale, but gives a fascinating and historical setting as well. The story of Miguel and his business with coffee trading is grippingly laid out in the story without being technical. Liss explains the tricks of Miguel's art carefully and mostly in layman's terms. But anyone who has dabbled in stocks and commodities trading now - online or actual - will learn that very little has changed in the business for t...more
I need to stop reading historical fiction with no subtlety. This reminded me of Fall of Giants with its then-this-happened-and-he-thought-that style, but it was a more confined set of characters and historical moment, so it was slightly more endurable. The setting will interest those curious about Dutch history or Jewish history, but if you are considering reading this because you want a good business thriller with brainy economics that drive the story, don't bother. The author gives the reader...more
David Liss' first two books, this one and "A Conspiracy of Paper," are really excellent combinations of early European history, mysteries and the position of Jews in 17th and 18th century Europe. This also provides a fascinating slice of the history of the growth of the coffee trade in Europe. I especially liked the way the one woman character in the book became addicted to chewing the coffee beans that the main character had secreted in her basement, without knowing what they were. It was so in...more
Set in the 17th century commodities market in Amsterdam, a likeable schemer, Miguel, uses the tricks of the market to lose and gain money, ruin enemies and gain respect. Although at times hard to follow all the twists and turns of this complicated story, I learned a lot about the Dutch's invention of new methods of trade; futures, stocks, speculative trading. There was also a lot to be learned about the Portuguese Jews who settled in Amsterdam during the Dutch golden age and how they policed the...more
I guess it's supposed to be a thriller (found it in the thriller/mystery section at the bookstore), but I just couldn't get into it. A little more than a hundred pages in, I still didn't like any of the characters and couldn't understand why it was so important to remind us of the characters' religion every couple of paragraphs. Got it. The first time, and the second, and the third, and....

Got really bored, so skipped to the last 50 pages and read those. Not at all inspiring enough to go back an...more
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I am a novelist living in San Antonio, Texas, though, for the record, I am not from Texas. I just live here. I have four novels published: A Conspiracy of Paper (which won the Edgar Award for Best First Novel) and A Spectacle of Corruption were both national bestsellers. They are set in 18th century London and feature Benjamin Weaver, a Jewish former pugilist, thief-taker for hire. Weaver will be...more
More about David Liss...
A Conspiracy of Paper (Benjamin Weaver, #1) The Whiskey Rebels The Devil's Company (Benjamin Weaver, #3) A Spectacle of Corruption (Benjamin Weaver, #2) The Twelfth Enchantment

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