The Serpent of Venice: A Novel

Front Cover
HarperCollins, Apr 22, 2014 - Fiction - 336 pages
2 Reviews

New York Times bestselling author Christopher Moore channels William Shakespeare and Edgar Allan Poe in this satiric Venetian gothic featuring the irresistibly mischievous Pocket of Dog Snogging, the eponymous hero of Fool

Venice, a really long time ago. Three prominent Venetians await their most loathsome and foul dinner guest, the erstwhile envoy from Britain who also happens to be a favorite of the Doge: the rascal-Fool Pocket.

This trio of cunning plotters—the merchant, Antonio; the senator, Montressor Brabantio; and the naval officer, Iago—have lured Pocket to a dark dungeon, promising a spirited evening with a rare Amontillado sherry and a fetching young noblewoman. Their invitation is, of course, bogus. The wine is drugged; the girl is nowhere in sight. These scoundrels have something far less amusing planned for the man who has consistently foiled their quest for power and wealth. But this Fool is no fool . . . and the story is only beginning.

Once again, Christopher Moore delivers a rousing literary satire, a dramedy mash-up rich with delights, including (but not limited to): foul plots, counterplots, true love, jealousy, murder, betrayal, revenge, codpieces, three mysterious locked boxes, a boatload of gold, a pound of flesh, occasional debauchery, and water (lots of water). Not to mention a cast Shakespeare himself would be proud of: Shylock; Iago; Othello; a bunch of other guys whose names end in "o"; a trio of comely wenches—Desdemona, Jessica, Portia; the brilliant Fool; his large sidekick, Drool; Jeff, the pet monkey; a lovesick sea serpent; and a ghost (yes, there's always a bloody ghost).

Wickedly witty and outrageously inventive, The Serpent of Venice pays cheeky homage to the Bard and illuminates the absurdity of the human condition as only Christopher Moore can.

Note: The book, too, is a veritable work of art. Rich creamy stock is enhanced by two-color printing, featuring part/chapter titles, running heads, and folios printed in red ink. The text block has blue-stained edges. The book opens to reveal two-page spread endpapers decorated with a sepia-toned antique map of Venice; an antique map of Italy graces the book’s front matter, printed in red. The jacket sports a matte finish with embossed author and title type; gold foil embellishes the title and illustration detail.

What people are saying - Write a review

The Serpent of Venice

User Review  - Elisabeth Clark - Book Verdict

Pocket of Dog Snogging, the eponymous hero of Moore's best seller Fool, is back and better (though not bigger) than ever. While serving in Venice as the envoy of the queen of Britain and France, the ... Read full review

Review: The Serpent of Venice

User Review  - Monica - Goodreads

I think this is my third favorite Moore book behind Lamb and Coyote Blue. His humor is balanced by an intriguing plot line, and a wonderful blend of several different stories. He did a wonderful job ... Read full review

All 2 reviews »

About the author (2014)

Christopher Moore is the author of thirteen previous novels, including Lamb, The Stupidest Angel, Fool, Sacré Bleu, and A Dirty Job. He lives in San Francisco, California.

Bibliographic information