My inter-library loan request finally came through with a copy of Neal Stephenson’s The Confusion! Huzzah!
I’m about halfway through it now. It seems to me that the bits of modern thinking embedded in the plot are somewhat more obvious than in the previous book. (For example, I’m reasonably certain that 17th-century Armenian didn’t include phrases identical in translation to modern ridiculous business jargon, although I suppose it’s possible.) I also suspect that Leibniz might not have anticipated Gödel numbering quite as thoroughly as he is depicted.
‘Half-Cocked’ Jack, the King of Vagabonds, has just constructed a set of phosphorus bombs to facilitate his breaking through the raiders blocking the trading routes. Will he ever regain his alchemically-prized cargo of denser-than-normal gold (possibly an isotope)? Will Eliza regain her stolen child?
Only one way to find out…