Rare Traits

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About the author:
Former forensic scientist David George Clarke was born and brought up in London. He studied for his bachelors and doctorate degrees in chemistry at the University of Nottingham and in 1973, he finally joined the ranks of the employed when he started work at the West Midlands Forensic Science Laboratory in Birmingham, England.

After three years learning the nuances of the trade, he followed his dream of working overseas by taking a post as a forensic scientist in the Hong Kong Government Laboratory. The lure and excitement of the Far East proved very strong and twenty-eight years later he was still there, retiring eventually as Hong Kong's last expatriate Government Chemist in 2004.

From Hong Kong, David and his wife, the children's book author and illustrator Gail Clarke, moved to the wilds of Tuscany where they set about taming their three acres of land. At the same time, they took steps to improve their Italian and David also fulfilled a lifelong ambition by embarking on a course of study and work experience in art restoration, knowledge from which he drew on when writing Rare Traits.

Finding they still missed many aspects of the Far East and seeing no reason why they couldn't enjoy the best of both worlds while still indulging their passion for writing, David and his wife now divide their time largely between Tuscany and Thailand, with trips to Hong Kong, Kenya, UK and New York City to visit their widely spaced offspring and grandchildren.

Rare Traits is David's first work of fiction.

Rare Traits

Authored by David George Clarke

A 582-year-old Renaissance artist's struggle for survival through the centuries and in the present day, where modern technology is starting to unravel his secrets - Rare Traits is a novel of deception, discovery, determination and survival.

Brilliant artist John Andrews is a mortal man like any other, but with one exception: he is almost six hundred years old. The rare traits that have given John his extraordinary long life are an enigma to him, but he knows from bitter experience that he must keep them secret - whenever they have been discovered by others, his very existence has been perceived as a threat that must be eliminated.

Born Luca di Stefano in early Renaissance Tuscany, he is apprenticed to the great fresco painter Piero della Francesca. When his lack of ageing is discovered, a fanatical and over-zealous Church wants him burnt at the stake. Fleeing to Naples, he adopts a new identity and starts a new life, the first of many artistic personas over the centuries. But the lingering threat of discovery is never far away ... and now modern technology is catching up.

Claudia Reid, forensic biochemist, profiles John's DNA following his arrest for a trivial incident. She is stunned by the results: they are unprecedented. Realising she has discovered something extraordinary and driven by a desire to prove her own research theories relating to 'junk' DNA correct, she embarks on a reckless mission to find John that could ruin her career.

Ced Fisher, forensic art forgery expert, has written a ground-breaking computer program that reveals nuances of an artist's style that are way beyond those the human eye can perceive. But when he uses the programme to compare John Andrews' work with that of certain long-dead artists and finds that they match, Ced is faced with questions whose answers defy logic. And the further he delves into the past, the deeper the mystery of John Andrews becomes.

As Claudia and Ced probe deeper into John Andrews' world, they unwittingly put his life at risk. There are others who want to know the secret of his eternal youth and who will stop at nothing to get it. Once again, John is looking over his shoulder...

Publication Date:
Nov 19 2012
1478245379 / 9781478245377
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
6" x 9"
Black and White
Related Categories:
Fiction / Science Fiction / General

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