Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


IAS Lies: Marcel Theroux in Conversation with Rye Dag Holmboe about The Secret Books

5:00 pm to 7:00 pm, 01 December 2017

The Secret Books by Marcel Theroux

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IAS Common Ground, Ground Floor, South Wing, Wilkins Building

Forming part of the 2017-18 IAS research theme of Lies, we are delighted to share this invitation to a conversation with Marcel Theroux about his latest novel, The Secret Books.

Seeking adventure, a young man flees the drudgery of shopkeeping in Tsarist Russia to make a new life among the bohemians and revolutionaries of 19th century Paris. Travelling undercover in the mountains of British India, he discovers a manuscript that transforms the world's understanding of the historical Jesus. Decades later, in a Europe threatened by unimaginable tragedy, he makes a despairing attempt to right a historic injustice. This breathtaking novel by the award-winning author of Far North and Strange Bodies tells the extraordinary tale of Nicolas Notovitch and his secret gospel. It is the epic story of a young man on the make in a turbulent world of spies and double-cross, propaganda and revolutionary violence, lost love and nascent anti-semitism -a world which eerily foreshadows our own era of post-truth politics. Based on real events, The Secret Books is at once a page-turning adventure and an examination of the stories that humans are willing to kill and die for.

Marcel Theroux is a novelist and broadcaster. He has published five novels. His second novel, The Paperchase, won the Somerset Maugham Award. His fourth novel, Far North (2009) was a finalist for the U.S. National Book Award, the Arthur C Clarke Award, and was awarded the Prix de l'Inaperçu in 2011. His most recent novel, The Secret Books, was published this year by Faber & Faber. He lives in London.

Rye Dag Holmboe is Fellow in Contemporary Art at University College London. His writings and interviews have been published in The White Review, Art Licks, and in academic journals.

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