The Garden of Evil
By David Hewson
(Delacorte Press, Hardcover, 9780385339575, 480pp.)
Publication Date: July 29, 2008
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In a deserted artist’s studio in the heart of Rome, detectives stumble upon a scene of shocking brutality: two bodies, freshly killed. Looming over them is a painting that bears all the hallmarks of a Caravaggio: a brilliantly colored canvas depicting a violent tableau of beauty and depravity. . . . In David Hewson’s bold new novel of suspense, this grisly discovery sends Detective Nic Costa on a desperate chase through the streets of his city. The consequences are devastating. And for Nic, the case has only just begun.
At the crime scene, detectives find a treasure trove of evidence—from fresh blood to lurid photos of dead prostitutes. For Costa, finding the killer who escaped him is intensely personal. But his prime suspect arrogantly hides in plain sight behind a fortress of money, power, and the law.
Teaming with an art expert, Costa follows clues hidden in the mysterious Caravaggio canvas. As he moves through a maze of history, he begins to make stunning connections to the present case. And each discovery brings him closer and closer to a secret buried in a priceless work of art, a conspiracy dating back four hundred years—and men who will stop at nothing to protect their own private garden of evil.
From modern forensics to the realm of the Medicis, from the force of faith to the corruption of power, The Garden of Evil is a novel steeped in Roman history—and an unforgettable experience in richly atmospheric, modern-day suspense.
David Hewson is the author of nine novels. Formerly a weekly columnist for the Sunday Times, he lives in Kent, England, where he is at work on his next crime novel, Dante’s Numbers, which Delacorte will publish in 2009.