The Secret Chord
By Geraldine Brooks
A rich and utterly absorbing novel about the life of King David, from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of People of the Book and March.
LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILEYS WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2016
With more than two million copies of her novels sold, New York Times bestselling author Geraldine Brooks has achieved both popular and critical acclaim. Now, Brooks takes on one of literature's richest and most enigmatic figures: a man who shimmers between history and legend. Peeling away the myth to bring David to life in Second Iron Age Israel, Brooks traces the arc of his journey from obscurity to fame, from shepherd to soldier, from hero to traitor, from beloved king to murderous despot and into his remorseful and diminished dotage.
The Secret Chord provides new context for some of the best-known episodes of David's life while also focusing on others, even more remarkable and emotionally intense, that have been neglected. We see David through the eyes of those who love him or fear him - from the prophet Natan, voice of his conscience, to his wives Mikal, Avigail and Batsheva, and finally to Solomon, the late-born son who redeems his Lear-like old age. Brooks has an uncanny ability to hear and transform characters from history, and this beautifully written, unvarnished saga of faith, desire, family, ambition, betrayal, and power will enthral her many fans.
Geraldine Brooks was born and raised in Australia. After moving to the USA she worked for eleven years on the Wall Street Journal, covering stories from some of the world's most troubled areas, including Bosnia, Somalia and the Middle East. Her first novels 'A Year of Wonders' and 'March have become international bestsellers, the latter earning Brooks the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. She lives with her husband in Massachusetts and is currently a fellow at Harvard University.
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- Publication date:
06 Oct 2015
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What Mary Renault did with Alexander the Great, Geraldine Brooks has done with King David: breathed life into an ancient hero. Haunting, exciting and as satisfying — Tom Holland
Here is a man who is both great and flawed, just like those tragic heroes Oedipus and King Lear. But in making David so satisfyingly human, Brooks has crafted from The Secret Chord a compelling read, contemporary in relevance — Meredith Jaffe, Guardian
A haunting, memorable novel — Sunday Times
The Secret Chord paints a portrait so layered and rich in detail it makes you feel you can reach out and touch him — Woman's Own
Vividly drawn . . . a beautiful and thoughtful book — Antonia Senior, The Times
This David is ecstatic, visceral and virile — Independent
The Secret Chord is sensual historical fiction, full of rich descriptive language — Third Way