An earthquake in Masada, Israel, kills hundreds and reveals a tomb buried in the heart of the mountain. A trio of investigators—Sergeant Jordan Stone, a military forensic expert; Father Rhun Korza, a Vatican priest; and Dr. Erin Granger, a brilliant but disillusioned archaeologist—are sent to explore the macabre discovery, a subterranean temple holding the crucified body of a mummified girl.
But a brutal attack at the site sets the three on the run, thrusting them into a race to recover what was once preserved in the tomb’s sarcophagus: a book rumored to have been written by Christ’s own hand, a tome that is said to hold the secrets to His divinity. The enemy who hounds them is like no other, a force of ancient evil directed by a leader of impossible ambitions and incalculable cunning.
From crumbling tombs to splendorous churches, Erin and her two companions must confront a past that traces back thousands of years, to a time when ungodly beasts hunted the dark spaces of the world, to a moment in history when Christ made a miraculous offer, a pact of salvation for those who were damned for eternity.
This is the first book in a new James Rollins’ series. What’s different is that this book is being co-written with Rebecca Cantrall. Being a James Rollins fan (I love his old standalones and the Sigma Force series), I gave the book a shot.
The book has all the makings of being an awesome Rollins’ novel, archaeology & religious conspiracies are a great mix. The only thing that nearly made me throw the book across the room in frustration was the appearance of vampires. And, of course, they can’t just be normal sleep-in-coffin vampires. Nope, we have the strigoi who are a special brand of vampire that loosely follow the typical vampire lore. I hated the trend of vampires almost from the get-go. (My only happily accepted media related vampire entertainment is Buffy the Vampire Slayer, of course. Classic.) But, anyway, it was only my curiosity and enjoyment of this author that kept me powering on.
Of the three main characters (Erin, Jordan, and Rhun), the one I liked the most ended up being Rhun. Which is pretty ironic considering the fact that he’s a vampire. But he had a very interesting story and I enjoyed the development of his character. Both Erin and Jordan were easy to read, but there was nothing stand out about them. Their love line was also a bit rushed, I felt.
There are still quite a few mysteries by the end, but that’s okay since this is only book one. Not the most spectacular start, but definitely worth checking out for any Rollins’ fans or people who enjoy the mix of thriller and supernatural.
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