cover image The Poison Secret: A Lang Reilly Thriller

The Poison Secret: A Lang Reilly Thriller

Gregg Loomis. Turner (www.turnerpublishing .com), $17.95 trade paper (292p) ISBN 978-1-63026-006-4

Loomis blends ancient historical legend with contemporary medicine in his lively seventh thriller featuring ex-FBI agent and practicing attorney Lang Reilly (after 2014’s The Cathar Secret). In Trabzon, Turkey, Baris, the four-year-old son of “ignorant mountain peasants,” is bitten by a snake whose venom is highly toxic, and yet the boy shows no ill effects whatsoever. Tests reveal anti-venom in Baris’s blood, but he was never inoculated with anti-venom serum. When a sample of his blood is later stolen from an American hospital, Reilly heads to Turkey for answers. Could the self-induced immunity of master poisoner Mithradates, king of Pontus in the first century B.C., have been handed down through the generations? And, if so, how many people will kill for it? Loomis smoothly spins a tale of greed and shady political maneuvering while commenting without sermonizing on humankind’s capacity for compassion and cruelty. (Jan.)