Spherical Mirrors, plane murders

New book

08 Σφαιρικά κάτοπτρα, επίπεδοι φόνοι

Spring 1191: In a commandeered mansion at Limassol, Cyprus, the newly wed king Richard, whom they have called the Lionheart, enjoys the fruit of his recent conquest of Cyprus. However, another war is raging in his surroundings. Intrigues, conspiracies, alliances forged and immediately broken; and to top it all off, a murder. The victim is the fiendish Laure, confidant of the queen mother Eleanor and concubine to her son. The main suspect is Dona Estephana, a doctor, once pupil of Averroes, attached to the newly wed Berengaria of Navarra.

Mid 1950s: An English Byzantine scholar, a French paleographer and a young Greek mathematician are urgently invited to Cyprus in order to evaluate a manuscript dating from the Third Crusade. It contains the solution to a difficult problem concerning spherical mirrors, stated by Ptolemy and solved by the Muslim scholar Alhazen. The manuscript also contains references to a murder. Things get more complicated when the three experts witness a second murder, eight hundred years after the original one…

Two interwoven stories, eight hundred years apart. Richard’s conquest of Cyprus during the Third Crusade and the 1955 – 1959 war of independence are bridged through the famous Kitab al Manazir (The book of optics), with its spherical mirrors problem. The solution to both mysteries can be found in this manuscript, provided one can read it properly!

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