By Alex Krasnov
As a teenager, I loved playing with an old bronze-framed mirror. Long faded from time, it threw on the objects reflected in it a veil of mystery, creating a sensation of something otherworldly. As my parents told me, the mirror was the work of famous Venetian artisans. One day I dropped it, and the glass broke. Most of all I wanted then to somehow glue it together, or make a new one, which would look the same.
That mirror, of course, could not be glued, but I began to read about reflections, be interested in stories about mirrors, and study how they are made. This fascination led me to study the works of Leonardo da Vinci, the legends of ancient Egypt and the Maya civilization, the facts of the rise and fall of crystallo--the famous Venetian glass, which, as per rumors, reflected reality better than it was. On this path, I met many interesting people: scientists, glass blowers, writers, astrologers. From them, I learned to connect the seemingly unrelated pieces of information, which helped me to develop an analogical approach—the ability to apply similarities between various branches of science.
Many years have passed since then. I took up applied science, published a lot of works, was awarded dozens of U.S. patents... made quite a few world renown mirrors with unusual properties. They can be found in cockpits of modern fighter jets, in solar energy converters, in TV screens, and on the facades of the world’s most famous buildings. One of them, the "black mirror", is used by NASA astronauts in special devices when going into outer space.
I visited many places, connected with mirrors one way or another. These include Murano, the legendary island of mirror artisans; Australia and three crosses—groups of stars, the heavenly reflections of the Christian cross in the night sky of the Southern Hemisphere; the mirror Kukulkan pyramid, and many others. But my thoughts would always return to the round bronze-framed mirror from my distant childhood. That mirror inspired me to write this novel.
CAPSOUL is a realistic fiction novel: its actions happen on the verge between the real and imaginary, on the same boundary, which is often the mirror surface. This novel is a collection of my observations, large and small discoveries related to mirrors and their reflections, numerical coincidences in well-known symbols, historical dates, the structure of precious stones, and natural phenomena. In the core of the novel is the mirror number 1666.
Enjoy your trip to the world of reflected reality!
In the middle of the 17th century, a prominent ecclesiastical leader is sentenced to exile. The Venetian mirror that was used to prophesy his political downfall reappears centuries later in Andrew Serov’s family and leads to a series of mysterious events.
Andrew joins a firm engaged in a project to control human consciousness. Two of his colleagues share with him the breathtaking mirror stories of their own. Deciphering the stunning connections between the events of their early lives, the team builds CapSoul—feats of neuroscience. The new device could help millions of people; it could also help Andrew to shed light on the great riddle of his life. The company’s owner, however, has his own plans for the CapSoul.
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