The Wonder Chamber
by Mary Malloy
"Perfect for authors craving an elaborate scheme." --Library Journal starred review
The headline on the society page of the New York Times
spoke volumes: “Boston Heiress to Marry Italian Prince.”
Whatever else one wanted to know could be seen in the grainy
black-and-white picture of the unhappy couple. She was a
frightened teenager with a rich father; he was a middle-aged
man with an impressive title and a grim expression.
It is the 100th anniversary of St. Patrick’s College and Professor Lizzie Manning is tasked with creating a centennial exhibition to celebrate the occasion. Her research takes her to Bologna, where the daughter of the college’s founder married an Italian prince with a family collection dating back to the Renaissance. Among the oddities and works of art Lizzie finds ancient alligators, old master paintings, unicorn tusks, and rarities from around the globe. But it is the mummified occupant of a sarcophagus that draws her into an unexpected mystery that reaches from ancient Egypt to German-occupied Italy in World War II.
“A professor herself (museum studies, Harvard Univ.), Malloy demonstrates a real flair for weaving an engrossing historical puzzle into her mystery plot. Carefully assembling her story, she gently reels us in. The author's third series entry (after Paradise Walk) is perfect for readers craving an elaborate scheme.”—Library Journal starred review
“History buffs [will be] fascinated by the wealth of historical information Lizzie unearths.”—Kirkus
Mary Malloy is the author of The Wandering Heart and Paradise Walk. She is also the author of four maritime history books, including the award-winning Devil on the Deep Blue Sea: The Notorious Career of Samuel Hill of Boston. An authority on musical traditions on shipboard, Mary has performed the songs of American mariners at museums and colleges around the world. She appears on four albums of traditional sea music, including the Aaargh-rated Pirate Songs! She has a Ph.D. from Brown University and is a professor of maritime history at the Sea Education Association in Woods Hole, MA. In addition, Mary teaches Museum Studies at Harvard University, where she won the Shattuck Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2010.