The Authenticator

William M. Valtos, Author
William M. Valtos, Author Hampton Roads Publishing Company $22.95 (392p) ISBN 978-1-57174-149-3
Reviewed on: 01/31/2000
Release date: 02/01/2000
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A near-death experience supplies the basis for this fast-paced mystery that features Theo Nikonos, a former insurance claims adjuster now working freelance for the Institute for the Investigation of Anabiotic Phenomena. Theo's mentor at the institute, Prof. Pierre DeBray, sends him to examine Laura Duquesne, a young woman who has experienced an extremely detailed near-death experience after a fiery car accident. Drawn by her beauty and helplessness, Theo reluctantly agrees to aid Laura in the search for her husband, Harrison, who by all evidence died in the car accident-but who actually survived, if what Laura learned in her near-death experience can be believed. Both Theo and Laura risk their lives in pursuit of Harrison and in their effort to prove Laura's claims. After several murders close to home, they must face the truth of Harrison's whereabouts as well as their feelings for each other. Never mind some stereotypical bad guys and a predictable ending. Valtos, whose previous novel, Resurrection, also dealt with near -death experience, provides not only an exciting detective story, but an enticing view of the afterlife that will leave readers pondering, wondering. (Feb.)
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