“Having been rescued from prison and torture in Haarlem, as of 1632 Torrentius is confined to a secret chamber in White Hall to be the King’s painter. He is not allowed to go out except at night and the early morning and must show a special pass to the guards. After making the acquaintance of a fellow Dutch painter one morning, Simon, he visits him and his wife, who reminds him of one of his many amours in Holland. Later, King Charles asks him to do a portrait of himself and his wife.
So begins a fascinating novel of history, magic and moral terror.
A grand oeuvre in the tradition of Leo Perutz.”