Still I have to say that "The Mysterious flame" is not Eco`s best novel. I would love to say that it is, for it`s always best to end on the highest note possible, but on my all time list "The Mysterious flame" comes as the least interesting of Eco`s works. The beginning of the novel is brilliant though - the way Yambo, a 60 year old book antiquarian, recovers from a stroke without remembering any of his life and remembering everything he`s read over the years of his life, is depicted in this novel in such a grand manner that I enjoyed it more than anything. Still later the book loses some of its charm - Eco gives too much attention to the happenings of WW2 where Yambo was a boy in a contra-mussolinian Italian family, description of his meeting the partisans etc, etc.
Unlike other Eco`s books where he inserted tons of medieval history in "The mysterious flame" he has chosen an approach of inserting bits and pictures of comics and children`s book of the pre-war and the post-war era. Although I know much more of that period than about freemasonry, monasteries and cartography this somehow leaves me cold. I don`t know, maybe I`m too young to appreciate it more, maybe I just expect too much of Eco.
And in case if you wonder what the "Mysterious flame of Queen Loanna" is - it`s also a fragment from a comic book about some strange queen of a native Americans` tribe, something that would have no meaning in Yambo`s live, had he not thought of it as of a passage to Sibilla - a girl he loved when he was still at school and a girl who`s face he can`t see anymore.