The Day of Atonement

The Day of Atonement

A Novel

Book - 2014
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The bestselling author of such novels as A Conspiracy of Paper and The Whiskey Rebels continues his masterly run of "atmospheric" ( The Washington Post ), "page-turning" ( The Baltimore Sun ), "tremendously smart" ( Newsweek ) historical thrillers. In The Day of Atonement , David Liss blends meticulous period detail with crackling adventure in the tale of one man's quest for justice--and retribution.
Sebastião Raposa is only thirteen when his parents are unjustly imprisoned, never to be seen again, and he is forced to flee Portugal lest he too fall victim to the Inquisition. But ten years in exile only serve to whet his appetite for vengeance. Returning at last to Lisbon, in the guise of English businessman Sebastian Foxx, he is no longer a frightened boy but a dangerous man tormented by violent impulses. Haunted by the specter of all he has lost--including his exquisite first love--Foxx is determined to right old wrongs by punishing an unforgivable enemy with unrelenting fury.
Well schooled by his benefactor, the notorious bounty hunter Benjamin Weaver, in the use of wits, fists, and a variety of weapons, Foxx stalks the ruthless Inquisitor priest Pedro Azinheiro. But in a city ruled by terror and treachery, where money and information can buy power and trump any law, no enemy should be underestimated and no ally can be trusted. Having risked everything, and once again under the watchful eye of the Inquisition, Foxx finds his plans unraveling as he becomes drawn into the struggles of old friends--and new enemies--none of whom, like Lisbon itself, are what they seem.
Compelled to play a game of deception and greed, Sebastian Foxx will find himself befriended, betrayed, tempted by desire, and tormented by personal turmoil. And when a twist of fate turns his carefully laid plans to chaos, he will be forced to choose between surrendering to bloodlust or serving the cause of mercy.

Praise for The Day of Atonement
"Enthralling . . . [a] sly, rich and swift novel of vengeance and rough justice." -- The Seattle Times
"One of the masters of the historical thriller, Liss is back with yet another highly entertaining novel. . . . [ The Day of Atonemen t] paints a vivid picture of the waning days of the Inquisition, and of the truly evil religious leaders who led it. One of Liss's best books." --Minneapolis  Star Tribune

"Foxx is reminiscent of Lee Child's Jack Reacher: a man with his own moral code who takes on multiple adversaries simultaneously. . . . Liss has the start of another solidly researched, action-packed historical series here." -- Booklist (starred review)
"[An] action-packed novel." -- The Wall Street Journal
"Snappy dialogue and convincing atmosphere . . . The plot moves swiftly to a shattering climax." -- The Washington Post

"Another intriguing thriller set against historical events for Liss, who has a knack for period detail, breakneck plots and characters we want to root for." -- San Antonio Express-News
"Fans of Liss know well his mix of dark arts and historical detail." --New York Daily News
"The history is well researched and furnishes an excellent portrait of Portugal under the ever-looming shadow of the Inquisition. A compelling story of obsession and revenge." -- Library Journal (starred review)
Publisher: New York : Random House, [2014]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781400068975
Branch Call Number: LISS D
Characteristics: 365 pages ; 25 cm


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May 02, 2017

I don't often like historical fiction, but David Liss is an exception. Although he's American, many of his novels are set in 18th century England. His earliest books featured the memorable protagonist Benjamin Weaver, a Jewish boxer turned "thief taker," who finds himself mixed up in all manner of complicated plots. Weaver has a small part in "The Day of Atonement," but the hero here is a young Portuguese man who lost relatives to the Inquisition, fled home, and remade himself in England. He returns to Portugal for revenge! It's both a fast paced caper and a rich evocation of the place and time period. The devastating Lisbon earthquake, which was also a key plot point in Voltaire's "Candide," is also used in the story.

ArapahoeAnnaL Dec 25, 2016

A victim of the Portuguese Inquisition is determined to get revenge in the action packed novel!

Jan 26, 2016

A classic in the historical novel genre. A great read.

Jan 14, 2015

I find it fascinating to read about an era I know so little able. I didn’t realize that the Inquisition lasted into the 19th century nor did I realize it was not just Spain. I know, historically I should have realized it was a Catholic cause, but I’d never associated it with Portugal. Liss, as in his other well researched historical fiction has created compelling characters and settings. When Sebastian Foxx returns to his native Portugal in the mid 1700’s to find and kill the aggressive priest responsible for the death of his “New Christian” parents and to find the person who was responsible for turning his father over to the Inquisition his live becomes very complicated. He’s always had trouble controlling his anger and there are many times while in Lisbon, he nearly kills someone deserving of death. He becomes a member of the English businessmen, and finds love not where he expected it. Just is served, but very violently because of the Lisbon earthquake.


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