Richard Zimler's The Angelic Darkness is that ineffable mixture of light and dark, desire and death. Richard Zimler's The Angelic Darkness is an unforgettable, tender, and magical portrait of San Francisco in the mid-80s as well as its lost souls, struggling to find love and intimacy in a city whose buoyancy has been eclipsed by the shadows of gloom. Offering them a way out of these shadows is a storyteller whose mysterious tales skirt the boundary between good and evil.
From the internationally bestselling author of The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon comes a novel of incomparable scope and beauty that takes the reader on an epic journey from war-ravaged nineteenth-century Europe to antebellum America. A bereft child, a freed African slave, and the rich history of Portugal's secret Jews collide memorably in Richard Zimler's mesmerizing novel--a dazzling work of historical fiction played out against a backdrop of war and chaos that unforgettably mines the mysteries of devotion, betrayal, guilt, and forgiveness.Hunting MidnightAt the dawn of the nineteenth century in Portugal, John Zarco Stewart is an impish child of hotheaded emotions and playful inquisitiveness, the unwitting inheritor of a faith shrouded in three hundred years of secrecy--for the Jews of the Iberian Peninsula have been in hiding since the Inquisition. But a season of loss and bitter discovery brings his innocence to an abrupt end. It is only the ministrations of a magical stranger, brought to Porto by his seafaring father, that restore his safety: Midnight, an African healer and freed slave, the man who will become John's greatest friend and determine the course of his destiny.When Napoleon's armies invade Portugal, violence again intrudes on John's fragile peace, and seals his passage into adulthood with another devastating loss. But from the wreckage comes revelation as he uncovers truths and lies hidden by the people he loved and trusted most, and discovers the act of unspeakable betrayal that destroyed his family--and his faith. And so his shattering quest begins as he travels to America, to hunt for hope in a land shackled by unforgivable sin.With stunning insight and an eye for rich historical detail--from the colorful marketplaces of Porto to the drowsy plantations of the American South, from the Judaism John discovers as a young man to the mystical Africa that Midnight conjures from his memories--in Hunting Midnight Richard Zimler has crafted a masterpiece.From the Hardcover edition.
The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon, an international bestseller, is an extraordinary novel that transports listeners into the universe of Jewish Kabbalah during the Lisbon massacre of April 1506. Just a few years earlier, Jews living in Portugal were dragged to the baptismal font and forced to convert to Christianity. Many of these New Christians persevered in their Jewish prayers and rituals in secret and at great risk; the hidden, arcane practices of the kabbalists, a mystical sect of Jews, continued as well. One such secret Jew was Berekiah Zarco, an intelligent young manuscript illuminator. Inflamed by love and revenge, he searches, in the crucible of the raging pogrom, for the killer of his beloved uncle Abraham, a renowned kabbalist and manuscript illuminator, discovered murdered in a hidden synagogue along with a young girl in dishabille. Risking his life in streets seething with mayhem, Berekiah tracks down answers among Christians, New Christians, Jews, and the fellow kabbalists of his uncle, whose secret language and codes by turns light and obscure the way to the truth he seeks. A marvelous story, a challenging mystery, and a telling tale of the evils of intolerance, The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon both compels and entertains.
The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon is a novel that transports the reader into the mystical universe of kabbalah during the Lisbon massacre of April 1506. Just a few years earlier, Jews living in Portugal were dragged to the baptism font and forced to convert to Christianity. Many of these "New Christians", in secret and at great risk, persevered in their rituals, and the hidden, arcane practices of the kabbalists continued as well. One such secret Jew was Berekiah Zarco, a young manuscript illuminator. Inflamed by love and revenge, he searches for the killer of his beloved uncle Abraham, a renowned kabbalist discovered murdered in a hidden synagogue, along with a young girl in deshabille. Risking his life in streets seething with mayhem, Berekiah tracks down answers among Christians, New Christians, Jews, and the fellow kabbalists of his uncle, whose secret language and codes at turns light and obscure the way to the truth he seeks.
These aphoristic gleanings of ancient and mystical philosophy- written in the form of haiku by award-winning novelist Richard Zimler- capture the heart of the tradition in ways that are personally awakening. Love's Voice is a doorway to Kabbalah for readers at all levels of experience. Acclaimed novelist Richard Zimler uses the form of haiku to distill Kabbalistic philosophy into its most essential form, providing a rare and deeply affecting experience of the wisdom of the ages. These seventy-two haiku require no special knowledge of Kabbalah or, indeed, of Jewish culture. Readers who do have some background in Kabbalah will find additional-and sometimes hidden-references and meanings in many of these verses. Every passage in Love's Voice verse is a memorable meditation that will touch each reader in a different way. Here is a greatly original yet historically framed entry point to an extraordinary mystical tradition. .
By the author of the critically acclaimed international hits The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon and The Warsaw Anagrams, this novel proves Richard Zimler's mastery of the "riveting literary murder mystery" (Independent on Sunday). It's Berlin, 1932. Sophie is a smart and sexually precocious fourteen-year-old coming of age during Hitler's rise to power. Forced to lead a double life when her father and boyfriend become Nazi collaborators, she reserves her dreams of becoming an actress for her beloved elderly neighbor, Isaac Zarco, and his friends, most of whom are Jews working against the government in a secret group called the Ring. When a member is sent to Dachau, she realizes there must be a Nazi traitor in the group. But who? Through successive mysteries, reversals, and surprises --and a race against time --The Seventh Gate builds to a shattering end. In its chilling but sensuous evocation of the time and place, Richard Zimler's novel is a love story and a tale of ferocious heroism
A Novel of Berlin, Prophesy, and Unfinished PortraitsIn the Author's Note to his internationally bestselling novel, The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon, Richard Zimler described how he discovered a long-lost 16th-century manuscript in an Istanbul cellar written by a Portuguese kabbalist named Berekiah Zarco. More than 400 years later, Isaac Zarco becomes convinced by the pact between Hitler and Stalin - and other 'signs' - that an apocalyptic prophesy made by his ancestor is about to come terribly true. Is he mad to believe that by decoding these ancient kabbalistic texts he might be the one to save the world?Set in 1930s Berlin, during the Nazis' rise to power, The Seventh Gate brings together Sophie Riedesel, an intelligent, artistic, and sexually adventurous fourteen-yearold with Isaac Zarco and his friends, most of whom are Jews, ex-circus performers and underground activists. When a series of forced sterilizations, brutal murders and 'disappearings' to concentration camps decimates the group, Sophie must fight with all her ingenuity and guile to save all that she loves about Germany - at any cost. In its beautifully shaped portraits and in its chilling but sensuous evocation of Berlin in the 1930s, The Seventh Gate is at one and the same time a love story and tragedy - and a tale of ferocious heroism.
Autumn 1940. The Nazis seal 400,000 Jews inside a small area of the Polish capital, creating an urban island cut off from the outside world. Erik Cohen, an elderly psychiatrist, is forced to move into a tiny apartment with his niece and his beloved nine-year-old nephew, Adam. One bitterly cold winter's day, Adam goes missing. The next morning, his body is discovered in the barbed wire surrounding the ghetto. The boy's leg has been cut off, and a tiny piece of string has been left in his mouth. Soon, another body turns up - this time a girl's, and one of her hands has been taken. Evidence begins to point to a Jewish traitor luring children to their death&In this profoundly moving and darkly atmospheric historical thriller, the reader is taken into the most forbidden corners of Nazi-occupied Warsaw - as well as into the most heroic places of the heart. Praise for Richard Zimler:'A riveting literary murder mystery, [The Last Kabbalist of Lisbon] is also a harrowing picture of the persecution of 16th-century Jews and, in passing, an atmospheric introduction to the hermetic Jewish tradition of the Kabbalah. ' Independent on Sunday 'Zimler [is] a present-day scholar and writer of remarkable erudition and compelling imagination, an American Umberto Eco. ' Spectator'Zimler has this spark of genius, which critics can't explain but readers recognise, and which every novelist desires but few achieve. ' Independent 'Zimler is an honest, powerful writer. ' Guardian
Warsaw, 1941--an exhausted and elderly psychiatrist named Erik Cohen makes his way home to the Jewish ghetto after being interned in a Nazi labor camp. Yet only one visionary man--Heniek Corben--can see him and hear him. Heniek soon realizes that Cohen has become an ibbur--a spirit. But how and why has he taken this form? As Cohen recounts his disturbing and moving story, small but telling inconsistencies appear in his narrative. Heniek begins to believe that Cohen is not the secular Jew he claims to be, but may, in fact, be a student of practical Kabbalah? of magic. Why is he lying? And what is the importance of the anagrams he creates for the names of his friends and relatives? Heniek traces his suspicions and comes to an astonishing conclusion?one that has consequences for his own identity and life, and perhaps for the reader's as well.