"Philipp Blom (born 1970) is a historian, novelist, journalist and translator. He was born in Hamburg, Germany, grew up in Detmold, and studied in Vienna and Oxford. He holds a DPhil in Modern History from Oxford University. After living and working in London, Paris and Vienna he now lives in Los Angeles with his wife Veronica Buckley.
In 1777 several of the world's greatest men gathered together to create a book that would champion rationalism, free thinking, and secularism--the Encyclopédie. Such leading minds as Diderot, Rousseau, and Voltaire conceived of a work that would tear down the social order dominated by the Crown and Church, a brave act at a time when heresy could still be punished by death. During the years it took to produce all twenty-seven volumes, the writers faced exile, jail, and censorship. But when they were done, they had created a book that would provide the foundation for the Enlightenment and change the world forever. Novelist and historian Philipp Blom presents the story behind the sixteen-year struggle to create the Encyclopédie, the men who wrote it, the powerful forces that tried to suppress it, and the tremendous impact it had on the world.