Umberto Eco is never an easy read. Although perhaps not as complex as Foucault's Pendulum, Baudolino nevertheless demands the reader's attention.
We meet Baudolino in Constantinople in 1204. As the Crusaders sack the city, Baudoline rescues a Greek priest to whom he eventually tells his life store. We follow Baudolino from his childhood in northernwestern Italy through an encounter with Frederick Barbarossa that leads Baudolino to the University of Paris. Finding friends there, the group sets out on an adventurous search for the semi-mythical kingdom of Prester John. They encounter a plethora of supposedly mythical creatures that turn out to be real (or are they??), and eventually return to world from which they set out.
Numerous historical figures make an appearance, and historical detail abounds, and Eco includes his typical sprinkling of Latin and other languages. At 500+ pages the book is a difficult read, but worth it in the end.
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