cover image The Vault

The Vault

Boyd Morrison. S&S/Touchstone, $24.99 (448p) ISBN 978-1-4391-8182-9

Morrison's excellent third thriller (after The Ark and Rogue Wave) finds series hero Tyler Locke, aided by TV journalist and Greek scholar Stacy Benedict, trying to defuse a time bomb aboard a Seattle to Bremerton, Wash., ferry by solving an ancient puzzle created by Archimedes. That is merely the first task devised for Locke and Benedict by criminal mastermind Jordan Orr, whose ultimate goal is to locate the tomb of King Midas and the secret of the Midas touch that transmutes base metals to gold. With the lives of their loved ones at stake, the pair embark on a series of increasingly dangerous jaunts to England, Germany, Greece, and Italy to collect and decipher pieces of a puzzle that will allow them to locate the tomb buried among the miles of tunnels underlying Naples. Compelling action more than compensates for improbabilities and lack of character development in this electrifying blend of history, myth, and science. (July)