Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Jacket Copy

I received the proposed jacket copy for Arabian Wine. It seemed a bit flat, so I rewrote it, producing this:

It is 1609, and the great Republic of Venice is showing unmistakable signs of decline. Matteo Benveneto, younger son of a once-powerful merchant family, plans to restore his city to glory by cornering the market in caofa, the hot beverage enjoyed everywhere in the Muslim world but still known in Europe only as “Arabian wine.” While his business associate seeks to develop a steam-powered engine before the Turks and the Dutch makes increasing inroads on Venetian trade, Matteo unleashes the wonders of coffee on the citizens, cultural arbiters, secret police, and foreign visitors of Venice, where everything goes except when it doesn’t, and negotiating the line between triumphant innovation and social disruption is fraught with unusual peril.

An exhilarating novel of caffeine appreciation, scientific upheaval, domestic surveillance, and the shock of the new, Arabian Wine offers a lush and sensuous portrayal of a world in transition -- a witty, high-spirited and ultimately moving tale of brave resolve and entrenched resistance in a world where East meets West and the future of civilization seems, as always, up for grabs.


My publisher, however, says "Nice try."


14 Comments:

Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

Now you need to post the original so we can point fingers and scoff.

7:13 AM  
Blogger Madeleine Robins said...

What Maureen said. How can we tell if the publisher's a Philistine unless we see the original?

8:57 AM  
Blogger Gregory Feeley said...

Wait two months and you can see the final jacket copy. (Perhaps he will incorporate a bit of mine.)

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