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A #1 international bestseller reminiscent of the works of Roberto Bolaño, Carlos Ruiz Zafon, and Edward Rutherford—a page-turning historical epic, set in early eighteenth-century Spain, about a military mastermind whose betrayal ultimately leads to the conquest of Barcelona, from the globally popular Catalonian writer Albert Sánchez Piñol.

Why do the weak fight against the strong? At 98, Martí Zuviría ponders this question as he begins to tell the extraordinary tale of Catalonia and its annexation in 1714. No one knows the truth of the story better, for Martí was the very villain who betrayed the city he was commended to keep.

The story of Catalonia and Barcelona is also Martí’s story. A prestigious military engineer in the early 1700s, he fought on both sides of the long War of the Spanish Succession between the Two Crowns—France and Spain—and aided an Allied enemy in resisting the consolidation of those two powers. Politically ambitious yet morally weak, Martí carefully navigates a sea of Machiavellian intrigue, eventually rising to a position of power that he will use for his own mercenary ends.

A sweeping tale of heroism, treason, war, love, pride, and regret that culminates in the tragic fall of a legendary city, illustrated with battle diagrams, portraits of political figures, and priceless

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review by . July 25
Fascinating tale of Zuviria Marti, who because of a childhood prank, is sent off from Spain to France to be educated. He arrives at the estate of Vauban, a legendary engineer who has fought in many wars. While the other two candidates to be trained appear superior to Zuvira, he is chosen.      His training as an engineer is more intense than one can imagine as he is routinely put through exercises where he has a short time to look at something and then he is tested on the most …
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