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The Dante Chamber

(The Dante Club #2)

3.42  ·  Rating details ·  698 ratings  ·  144 reviews
From Mathew Pearl, the bestselling author of The Dante Club, a masterful tale of literature, obsession, and murder

The year is 1870. Five years after a series of Dante-inspired killings disrupted Boston, a man is found murdered in the public gardens of London with an enormous stone around his neck etched with a verse from the Divine Comedy. When more mysterious murders eru
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published May 29th 2018 by Penguin Press
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Victoria Christina Rossetti never married. She died in 1894 from a recurrence of breast cancer.

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3.42  · 
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 ·  698 ratings  ·  144 reviews

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I am going to place this one in my DNF file. It was just too overly done for my tastes. If one loves poets, Dante, and the fact that they may have come together to solve a mystery than this book would surely be for you.

I did get up to the 20% mark, but just found that I received no pleasure from the story.
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
It's been several years since I read THE DANTE CLUB, but I still remember how engrossed I was with the book, even though the details of the book is a bit hazy. Nevertheless, reading THE DANTE CHAMBER brought some memories back of what happened in THE DANTE CLUB.

The Lit Bitch
May 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars

To say that Matthew Pearl likes literature is an understatement. Many of his books are literary related in some way or another, making them really intriguing to me.

My first experience with Pearl was with the book THE LAST BOOKANEER which was a wonderful read, but more importantly it was different. I have also had THE DANTE CLUB on my radar for the better part of six years, so when this one came up for review I was stoked. So why haven’t I read THE DANTE CLUB you ask…..I have no idea.

Apr 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved The Dante Club and was so excited to see there was a sequel. At the beginning it seemed like a repeat of the story with just a change in scenery from Boston to London but things take an unpredictable path and the copycat Dante killer is not what he seems. This is not at all a replay of The Dante Club it is a completely different animal. If possible, it’s even more surprising, more suspenseful and more shocking. The twists were jaw-dropping. One astonished me so completely that ...more
Erika Robuck
May 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Delicious, dark, and dreamy historical thrillers are Matthew Pearl’s specialty, and he again delivers with THE DANTE CHAMBER. Though it is preceded by THE DANTE CLUB, the book stands alone as a world contained.

The fascinating London literati of the mid-nineteenth century populate the pages, and are an utter delight because of their absurdity, their egos, and their unique views of the world. Christina Rossetti is the heart of the book, at once intimidating, otherworldly, and sympathetic. Tennyson
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very engrossing, fun, and quite a ride......and now I am finally reading Purgatory, which is a big part of this novel....with the poem, intertwined through out the story. Twists and turns all along the way. I enjoyed the history part of it, and the literary people involved. Set in London, when the first book was set in Boston.....and Dante and his Divine Comedy , the star.

Highly recommended.
Gwen - Chew & Digest Books -
Oh, Matthew Pearl, Dante Alighieri, Oliver Wendell Holmes et. all, how I love thee.

Allow me to count the Levels.

One, Ante-Purgatory or Stubbornness, where you wash me upon the shore in uncertain anticipation as to what journey you will enforce upon me and if I will be able to get anything done until I finish each and every page. I feel no guilt for those the people and tasks that I will ignore as I devour your words and characters. In short, I feel no need for repentance, just leave me and my bo
Dave Szostak
Jul 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Victorian versifiers (Christina Rossetti, Robert Browning, Alfred Tennyson, and Oliver Wendell Holmes) tussle with a serial killer in this continuation of events chronicled in The Dante Club (2003). Pearl's modus operandi throughout his clutch of historical novels is his interweaving of literary stylistics. In his latest, the twentieth century Serial Killer Novel melds with the nineteenth century Novel of Sensation and adds a filigree of the eighteenth century Gothic Tale. The 'murders' Pearl de ...more
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
I don't really have a lot to say about this book, as much as I love the subject matter.. Dante, Holmes, Browning, & Tennyson... It just didn't click with me.

The beginning sets up a nice plot, with a murder found to be based on the works of Dante, but then it just sort of falters, there is too much interpretations of Dante's work and less focus on the actual plot, which honestly kept throwing me off. The ending is basically where the action is and there's not much of it.

I found it interesti
Dan Graser
Jun 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Matthew Pearl is a mystery writer with equal parts erudition, skill, pacing, and historical intrigue. In this second entry into his Dante Club series the scene shifts to London and a series of apparent gruesome murders based on the 7 terraces of Dante's Purgatorio. Bringing back Oliver Wendell Holmes and introducing Robert Browning, Christina Rossetti, and Alfred Lord Tennyson into the investigative team, Pearl delivers a thrilling mystery that at no point resorts to cheap tricks while at the sa ...more
Apr 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
While I didn't like it as well as the previous Dante Club. I found the atmosphere of 1870's London to just as central a character as those trying to solve the murders. There is also the disappearance of Christina Rossetti's brother and together with Robert Browning, Oliver Wendell Holmes and Alfred Tennyson. They try to find out if her brother who was obsessed with Dante Inferno. Could he be the one behind the murders or the next victim.
Jun 21, 2018 rated it it was ok
Having multiple device issues and bad weather may have thrown me into a less than friendly mood as I read this book. I must admit that I did not read the first book in the series either. I read a book by this author a few years ago and saw that I did not respond well to his writing style then either. Many more words are used than necessary.
I also said about that earlier book that there was great potential in plot and characters. This Dante series probably does appeal to any Dante fans as well as
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
After the terrible happenings in Boston of a deranged killer trying to copy the work of Dante's "Comedy" they thought it was all over but evil has crept back...
The scene is London and a politician is found dead with clues that lead back to Dante.
Incredibly it all lends suspicion to the Rosetti siblings, Gabriel in particular.
Christina is single minded in her conviction that it's not her brother committing these crimes and sets out with the help of her literary friends, including Wendell Holmes f
Megan Richardson
Did not finish: quitting on page 120. I really liked The Dante Club when it came out...15 years ago, but haven't been too impressed with Pearl in the books I've read since then. Since this was a direct sequel I was hoping that the magic would come back. Sadly, it didn't really work. All the pieces were there, but there wasn't anything that hooked me.
Feb 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
This was definitely not "The Dante Club". I found this book rather dry, not particularly compelling mystery-wise, and generally difficult to get into. I slogged my way through 63% of the book and decided to quit. This is the first book I've quit in a couple of years. I'm a little disappointed.
Ray Palen
May 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Read my review next Friday on .
Robert Schwab
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was ok
I really wanted to love this book, but I didn't. I didn't even like it much, and finished it out of loyalty to the author, who has written some fine thrillers, including The Dante Club. I found it difficult to put that first book down, but found this one about as hard to pick up. The sequel seems much more Dante-centric, to the point of obsession. Pearl even falls into the trap of incorporating expository literary history into internal monologues and dialogue in sometimes unconvincing and obviou ...more
Charlotte Lynn
Jun 22, 2018 rated it liked it
I am not a poet, nor do I know much about poets. So, I was not familiar with the writings of Browning, Tennyson, or the others that Matthew Pearl refers to in Dante’s Chamber. There were times that I felt like I was lost, times I felt like I had no clue what was being referred to but I kept reading. I wanted to know where Christina’s brother was.

Dante’s Chamber is a slow read. I am usually a quick reader and with this one, I had to read every word and read them slowly so that I could follow the
Jill Deutsch
Jun 10, 2018 rated it liked it
Having enjoyed the Dante Club, I was looking forward to the Dante Chamber. First, a little too much time has lapsed between the first novel and the sequel. Sprinkled throughout were some references to the previous story but it has been so long ago that I have forgotten a lot. As to this novel, interesting premise following Dante’s travels through purgatory. However, too much explanation of the infinite interpretations of the poem. It broke up the rhythm of the story. Needed some editing. Interes ...more
Steven Belanger
Jun 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Interesting follow-up to The Dante Club, a real page-turner that I read in just two days--and yet the set-up occasionally gave me pause. Without giving anything away, it had a two steps ahead, one step back approach to cliffhanger writing that became a little too transparent and grating after awhile. That's Pearl's way of either info-dumping or flashbacking, and it works when it works, but it really doesn't when it doesn't. More than once, I thought, "Oh, come on," while reading it.

Having said t
...more Historical Fiction
Matthew Pearl’s debut novel, THE DANTE CLUB --- a terrific blend of history, literature and fiction --- found poets Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes and James Russell Lowell seeking out a killer who has staged a series of murders throughout the Boston area that resemble some of Hell's punishments as found in Dante's “Inferno.” The book was a breakthrough hit and was extremely well-received.

Since then, Pearl has written successive stories involving literary giants like Edgar
...more Mystery & Thriller
Matthew Pearl’s debut novel, THE DANTE CLUB --- a terrific blend of history, literature and fiction --- found poets Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes and James Russell Lowell seeking out a killer who has staged a series of murders throughout the Boston area that resemble some of Hell's punishments as found in Dante's “Inferno.” The book was a breakthrough hit and was extremely well-received.

Since then, Pearl has written successive stories involving literary giants like Edgar
Dec 08, 2018 rated it liked it
I liked this sequel to THE DANTE CLUB, but not as much as the first one. Maybe that has something to do with my own feelings that Dante's INFERNO is more intense than the PURGATORIO. There's a reason only the INFERNO is taught in most AP courses.

Certainly all of Pearl's strengths are there--his educated sense of the time period, his development of his characters, and most of all, his diction and sentence structure which have that edge of formality appropriate for the 1800's.

Here is the Kirkus
Nov 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
In this follow-up to The Dante Game, it is five years after the Dante murders in Boston. Deaths mimicking the punishments of Dante’s Purgatorio are occurring in London. Of the original poets, only physician/poet Oliver Wendell Holmes is present for these. He is on a speaking tour in Europe and the British Isles when poets Robert Browning and Christina Rossetti reach out to him for guidance and help. Against his better judgement, he withdraws from the tour to become involved. Poet Laureate Alfred ...more
Randy M.
May 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads, reviewed
The Dante Chamber is a continuation of the story begun in Matthew Pearl’s very popular novel, The Dante Club. The latter revolves around a series of murders relating to the eternal torments inflicted upon fallen souls in Inferno, the first canticle of Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy. The Dante Chamber progresses further into Dante’s vision of the afterlife with a series of murders relating to the Purgatorio, which is the next canticle in The Divine Comedy.

In The Dante Club, the murders are inve
J Earl
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads, won
The Dante Chamber from Matthew Pearl is the second volume of The Dante Club series. I'll say up front that my rating is influenced by my interest in both Dante's Divine Comedy and the poets/artists involved in the investigation.That said, it simply ended my internal debate between a 4 or 5 star rating in favor of the 5 star.

Like any good historical novel at least part of the appeal is the use of historical facts and/or figures and this book succeeds tremendously in that regard. We catch the Ross
Sep 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I loved Pearl's previous book on this subject, The Dante Club, and even though I've read and enjoyed other of his works, I just never felt they lived up to The Dante Club. So, of course, I was thrilled to see he'd written a sequel after all this time.

The weird thing is that, after all this time, it's hard to recall the specifics of The Dante Club and I feel that I ought to in order to make a proper comparison. (One could argue comparison isn't needed, that this book should be reviewed on its ow
Jul 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, mystery
"'Example: Why do mosquitoes exist, Browning? I will tell you. They exist to remind us that they should not. After God made his world, the devil began adding his touches'" (18).
"...Browning suddenly found the poet's expressive, judgmental face irritating--made to be sculpted rather than spoken to" (19).
"Christina cultivated seclusion" (71).
"As rain began again, Cayley held up an umbrella, trying to place it over her head more than his own, accomplishing neither" (138). *For some reason, I highly
Judie Britt
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
REVIEW: ⭐ ⭐⭐⭐
In the year 1870, London experiences serial murders based on the levels in Dante’s ‘Purgatorio’. As the investigation progresses, it is discovered that the painter, Gabriel Rossetti, was present at each of the crimes and becomes a suspect. His sister, Christina, fights to defend him and launches her own investigation with the help of Robert Browning, Alfred Lord Tennyson, and Oliver Wendell Holmes who was also a character in The Dante Club.
The book starts slowly and is far from a f
Dan Radovich
May 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Oh how good it is to see Dante again. THE DANTE CLUB debuted back in 2003, introducing readers to the talent that is Matthew Pearl, and fifteen years later he brings an even better story to life with THE DANTE CHAMBER. Oliver Wendell Holmes is back, this time in London, and he is joined by a band of illustrious literary and art world figures to crack a string of murders out of Purgatory. This is not a sequel, it is a true freestanding novel that just happens to share a few similarities with the ...more
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Note from the author:Hi everyone. My newest novel is The Dante Chamber, out May 29, 2018. It's a follow-up to my debut novel, The Dante Club, but you do not have to read one before the other, each stands on its own two feet. Hope you'll enjoy any of books you choose to pick up.

Matthew Pearl's novels have been international and New York Times bestsellers translated into more than 30 languages. His

Other books in the series

The Dante Club (2 books)
  • The Dante Club (The Dante Club #1)
“When Christina would stop to examine an interesting insect or patch of moss, Gabriel would stand in an impatient pose and shrug, not seeing what was at all interesting about it. Sometimes when writing her children’s lyrics she thought of Gabriel and Lizzie’s son, had he lived, and what he might have grown into.” 0 likes
“...the city usually only dulled and interrupted him. He required quiet, and to keep himself to himself, more than any writer he’d known. He was a shy beast who loved his burrow.” 0 likes
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