cover image The Medusa Stone

The Medusa Stone

Jack B. Du Brul. Onyx Books, $7.99 (451pp) ISBN 978-0-451-40922-5

James Bond-like globetrotting geologist Philip Mercer (he favors vodka gimlets) has made a name in international political and law-enforcement circles as a can-do guy. When his octogenarian best friend, Harry, is kidnapped by Israeli terrorists, Mercer undertakes a search for his friend that takes him to remote, exotic, dirt-poor Eritrea, where he sets out to locate a legendary diamond mine. Elsewhere, Sudanese rebels and sadistic Boers are following the leadership of a corrupt Italian industrialist determined to fulfill his family's African legacy. As bodies begin to pile up, and mayhem and destruction mount, Mercer, as he races to save Harry, has to decide if gorgeous, willowy Eritrean Jewess Selome Nagast is plotting against him. While tunneling through dangerous, long-disused mines and trekking across harsh, unforgiving desert, Mercer uncovers a biblical secret that puts him in even greater danger. This novel's nearly 500 pages of fast-paced prose propel DuBrul (Charon's Landing) closer to the front ranks of thriller authors. (May)