cover image The Prophecy

The Prophecy

Chris Kuzneski, Putnam, $25.95 (416p) ISBN 978-0-399-15659-5

In Kuzneski's anemic fifth thriller to feature ex–Special Forces soldiers and best pals David Jones and Jonathon Payne, now fabulously wealthy after their discovery of a Greek treasure in their last outing, The Lost Throne, an attractive stranger named Ashley Duvall asks their help in deciphering a coded message from the ancient past. Shortly after they agree to look into the matter, an assassin shoots Ashley dead. Jones and Payne banter their way across Europe searching for the meaning of both the message and a mysterious wooden box. Thief François Dubois (aka "Frankie Death") also wants the message and the box. Jones and Payne team with Ashley's neighbor, Megan Moore, who they learn is the last living relative of Nostradamus, the originator of the box and the message. Boring chitchat and too many historical, geographical, and culinary asides interrupt the infrequent action, while a rushed ending and a lastpage revelation indicate a continuation of the Nostradamus theme to come. Author tour. (July)