The 1660s were a time of great ferment-intellesctual, religious and
political-and this is reflected in Pear`s text. The novel is centred on a
suspicious death, that of Robert Grove, fellow of New College. We hear
about it from four witnesses, a Venetian Catholic intent on claiming credit
for the invention of blood transfusion; the son of a supposed traitor to
the Royalist cause, determined to vindicate his father; John Wallis, chief
cryptographer to both Cromwell and Charles 1l a mathematician, theologican
and master spy; and Anthony Wood, the famous Oxford antiqary. Each of the
first three witnesses is unreliable and only Wood, in the final volume,
reveals the truth.

Iain Pears—An Instance Of The Fingerpost

  • 9780099751816