A Conspiracy of Paper

A Novel

Liss, David

Book - 2000
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
A Conspiracy of Paper
THE HISTORICAL THRILLER OF THE YEAR Benjamin Weaver is an outsider in eighteenth-century London: a Jew among Christians; a ruffian among aristocrats; a retired pugilist who, hired by London's gentry, travels through the criminal underworld in pursuit of debtors and thieves. InA Conspiracy of Paper, Weaver investigates a crime of the most personal sort: the mysterious death of his estranged father, a notorious stockjobber. To find the answers, Weaver must contend with a desperate prostitute who knows too much about his past, relatives who remind him of his alienation from the Jewish faith, and a cabal of powerful men in the world of British finance who have hidden their business dealings behind an intricate web of deception and violence. Relying on brains and brawn, Weaver uncovers the beginnings of a strange new economic order based on stock speculation--a way of life that poses great risk for investors but real danger for Weaver and his family. In the tradition ofThe Alienistand written with scholarly attention to period detail,A Conspiracy of Paperis one of the wittiest and most suspenseful historical novels in recent memory, as well as a perceptive and beguiling depiction of the origin of today's financial markets. In Benjamin Weaver, author David Liss has created an irresistibly appealing protagonist, one who parlays his knowledge of the emerging stock market into a new kind of detective work.

Publisher: New York : Random House, 2000.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 0375502920
Characteristics: 442 p. ;,24 cm.


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Jun 01, 2013
  • marciemcgowan63 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I love David Liss' books. They are set in historical time periods and I learn from his books.
David Liss focuses his intricate tale of murder, money, and conspiracy on Benjamin Weaver, exboxer, self-described "protector, guardian, bailiff, constable-for-hire, and thief-taker," and son of a Portuguese Jewish "stock-jobber."

Mar 16, 2013
  • gingertrow rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Though set in the early 18th century, this well-written historical thriller will spur you to recognize all the characteristics of today's recent casino banking and financial bubble behavior. It's all happened before....also interesting look at the world of the "city" and the early stock exchange of London, as well as the treatment of jews in 18th century Britain--a topic I had no familiarity with before reading this hard-to-put-down thriller.

Dec 26, 2012
  • PAIGE CHERNOW rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

I liked the setting and character: Benjamin Weaver, a lapsed Jew and ex-boxer, weaves his way through both seamy and well-off society in 18th century London. The plot, too, was interesting at first: the early days of the stock market and an unsolved murder, possibly related to financial deception. However, the plot dragged after awhile, and it soon became clear that nothing would become clear. Still, I liked the atmosphere: a large cast of scheming, shady ruffians (both wealthy and poor), liberally spiced with violent brawls. Also, glimpses of life in the Jewish community, and depictions of the early stock market - an intricately constructed house of card based on promise and probability but undercut by deceit. In the end, though, I wasn't entirely certain what had happened with the murder plot, nor did I care much.

Dec 21, 2011
  • Jeremy410 rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Somewhat slow moving historical thriller of 18th. century London. But worth the effort as it picks up in the latter half. Period language may hinder some readers. Good insight into the difficulties faced by Jews in English society at that time. Main plot deals with a Jewish ex-boxer turned investigator who is trying to find out if his father's death was an accident or murder. The story takes place during the early years of the English stock market and involves a suspicion of forged investments documents.

Oct 14, 2011

paperback please

Feb 23, 2009
  • Sparkles76 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

David Liss writes a solid and compelling historical mystery that contains a unique hero and fascinating historical detail. I highly recommend this for those who like a more literary read.


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Oct 31, 2009

Former pugilist and Jew Benjamin Weaver investigates the death of his father, a notorious stockjobber. To find the answers Benjamin must delve into the world of the emerging stock market.


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Oct 31, 2009

Winner of the 2001 Edgar award for best first mystery novel.


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