In Search of Klingsor: The International Bestselling Novel
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In his international bestseller In Search of Klingsor, Jorge Volpi takes us from the Institute of Advanced Study to the heart of Hitler's Germany, where the line between truth and lies is all but dissolved.Mysterious, seductive, and immediately engrossing, this startlingly accomplished thriller explores the nexus between science and human nature and how they shaped the world in the aftermath of World War II.
In 1940, Francis Bacon, a brilliant young American physicist, is invited to join the prestigious institute at Princeton, the world's foremost physics research facility. But a series of personal indiscretions forces him to accept a different, more sinister, assignment: uncover "Klingsor," Hitler's top adviser on the scientific work in the Third Reich, including the race to create the first atomic bomb.
Bacon's efforts to expose the truth lead him to Gustav Links, a survivor of the attempted coup against Hitler. With Link's help, he continues researching postwar Germany -- in an era when a secret was really a secret and a lie wasn't necessarily a sin -- and falls into a complicated relationship with an alluring woman. His search for Klingsor, an ominous and seemingly omnicient adversary, is part mystery, part psychological puzzle, part witty intellectual game. In Search of Klingsor places real people in speculative historical fiction, combining the ingenuity of a scientific investigation with the suspense of a great espionage novel.
occasion. The trials begin on August 7, in the great hall of the People’s Court. On that day, eight defendants accused of conspiring against Hitler’s life are brought before the court: Erwin von Witzleben, Erich Hoepner, Helmuth Stieff, Paul von Hase, Robert Bernardis, Friedrich Karl Klausing, Peter Yorck von Wartenburg, and Albrecht von Haden. They are not permitted to wear ties or suspenders and their own lawyers even urge them to declare themselves guilty. Flanked on either side by two
and the Nazi authorities decide to concentrate the lion’s share of their research in a secret bunker in Berlin, a bomb- and radiation-proof building with two-meter-thick cement walls. Inside, there is a spacious laboratory, a workshop, air and water pumps, tanks of heavy water, and a variety of electronic instruments for handling the radioactive elements, a miniature Los Alamos, if you will. Heisenberg’s team moves into the new installations, as do some of the people working for Walter Bothe
transparent light united us like brothers. Never—not before or after—have I known a friendship as noble and as pure as the one I shared with him. I think it necessary to mention that Heini was the son of a rich man, a very rich businessman from Thuringia; I believe he owned a steel plant. As the German mark was devalued over and over again, he managed to amass quite a substantial fortune through crafty speculation. He and his wife, a Dutch woman of impeccable manners, traveled constantly—they
would he have to search through? How many people would he have to track down and interrogate? Moreover, after all was said and done, his efforts might turn out to be pointless: In all likelihood he was dealing with an incidental issue that could easily turn out to be one of the countless projects initiated but never completed by the Nazi bureaucracy. Bacon left his room at the Grand Hotel and walked toward the Allied Forces’ Nuremberg headquarters. At General Watson’s office he could send a
called it. From that moment on, the attacks against him intensified.” “That group never really existed. It was a fantasy dreamed up by Paul Weyland, one of Einstein’s archenemies. He only created it to generate attention for himself,” I answered. “But it was enough to generate a response among many physicists who, until then, had remained somewhat indifferent to the politics of the times. Einstein attended one of the meetings of the association and, later on, wrote a response to the