The Messiah Secret

James Becker, Author
James Becker, Signet Select, $9.99 mass market (480p) ISBN 978-0-451-41298-0
Reviewed on: 10/11/2010
Release date: 12/01/2010
Becker gathers many familiar elements of the religious artifact subgenre and reshuffles them into an entertaining, hunt-and-chase thriller that races from the English countryside to a hidden valley in the Middle East. Angela Lewis, a British Museum ceramics conservator, persuades her ex-husband with whom she remains friendly, police detective Chris Bronson, to join her at Carfax Hall, the Suffolk estate of recently murdered minor aristocrat Oliver Wendell-Carfax, who has willed his collection of antiques and ancient relics to the museum. At the hall, the pair uncover clues that point to an ancient treasure, one that Angela and Bronson have searched for in two earlier books, The First Apostle and The Moses Stone. A mad priest, who doesn't want the treasure to be found, and a greedy industrialist, who desires it for economic gain, make trouble. Appealing and clever protagonists coupled with intriguing history set this above the average Dan Brown clone. (Dec.)
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