The Watchers

Jon Steele, Author
Jon Steele. Penguin/Blue Rider, $26.95 (592p) ISBN 978-0-399-15874-2
Reviewed on: 04/30/2012
Release date: 05/29/2012
Switzerland’s Lausanne cathedral serves as a fitting backdrop for Steele’s first novel, an imaginative metaphysical thriller. Slow-witted Marc Rochat, who’s served for years as the cathedral’s “watcher,” maintains its belfry and fulfills daily routines that he believes help to keep the cathedral a sanctuary to lost angels. One of those angels, to his mind, is beautiful American expatriate Katherine Taylor, who through her work as a highly paid escort has recently run afoul of vicious Russian criminals. Meanwhile, Jay Harper, an amnesiac operative for the International Olympic Committee who’s been investigating a former Olympian’s bizarre death, comes across the Book of Enoch, an apocryphal book of the Bible concerned with fallen angels who intermingled with humanity. Steele (War Junkie) keeps his tale tantalizingly ambiguous, casting it with fey characters and skillfully concealing until the climax whether apparent weird events haven’t been manipulated to make them seem so. This solidly plotted tale, the first in a trilogy, will appeal to readers who like a hint of the uncanny in their fiction. Agent: Georgina Capel, Capel & Land Ltd. (June)
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