Leora Wenger's Reviews > A Conspiracy of Paper

A Conspiracy of Paper by David Liss
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's review
Aug 07, 11

bookshelves: jewish, historical-fiction
Read from July 28 to August 06, 2011

A Conspiracy of Paper is historical fiction, mystery, history of the stock market, history of the Jews in Britain (and accompanying antisemitism) with some commentary of the role of women in the 18th century. I don't usually read mysteries, but this one pulled me in, wondering who did what. I won't spoil the story by revealing the details.

The reviews I read focused on Benjamin Weaver, the protagonist, who is distanced from the Jewish community of his youth and makes his way in British society as a fighter with a brain. I was intrigued by the role of Miriam, the widow of his cousin, who seems to have few choices for real freedom other than to attach herself to a man.

If one reads the book from an economic point of view, one can apply some of the faith involved in buying stocks to our current financial situation. Like recent stock market bubbles, there was a famous one in the early 18th century. In current times, one wonders if a death is a murder or a suicide - in this tale, Benjamin Weaver suspects murder.

The novel wasn't always the smoothest reading, but if you have patience, different parts of the tale may appeal to you and reward you. I look forward to reading more of the novels by David Liss.

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