Mystery, intrigue, secret societies, alternate histories, alchemy, and Jewish mysticism are among the elements in the Umberto Eco’s Foucault’s Pendulum. If you like your books cerebral and encyclopedic in scope, then look no further than this title. Casaubon, Belbo, and Diotallevi work at a vanity publisher that deals with loads and loads of books about conspiracy theories, magic, and the occult. In a fit of boredom, they concoct a plan to create their own conspiracy theory that weaves together all these disparate pieces of information with Belbo’s computer, Abulafia. What follows is a ride that few other authors can take you on, with spellbinding prose, a dizzying amount of information you never knew, and an examination of why people insist on believing there’s a secret behind every event in history.