"This document, dear friend, will shatter the Church...."
Reading these words in a letter in a dusty archive, Thomas Kelly is skeptical. The papers to which they refer have vanished, but Father Kelly, a Jesuit priest, doubts anything could ever have had that power - until the Vatican suddenly calls him to Rome to begin a desperate search for that very document.
Meanwhile, standing before a council of her people, Livia Pietro receives instructions: she must find a Jesuit priest recently arrived in Rome, and join his search for a document that contains a secret so shocking it has the power to destroy not only the Catholic Church, but Livia’s people as well.
As cryptic messages from the past throw Thomas and Livia into a treacherous world of art, religion, and conspiracy, they are pursued by those who would cross any line to obtain the document for themselves. Thomas and Livia must race to stop the chaos and destruction that the revelation of these secrets would create. Livia, though, has a secret of her own: she and her people are vampires.
In a sprawling tapestry that combines the religious intrigue of Dan Brown with the otherworldly terror of Stephenie Meyer, Blood of the Lamb is an unforgettable journey into an unthinkable past
©2013 Sam Cabot (P)2013 Simon & Schuster
I am a New York musician, a New York native, and a passionate reader of fiction. Audible is helping me fill in some serious literary gaps.
This book has a very interesting premise--truly thought-provoking, And it is executed by an extraordinarily graceful writer. The story works both as a straight-ahead what-if thriller and also as a metaphor for issues from our current world.
All of the characters have a vivid individuality. Any recommendations would qualify as spoilers. Sam Cabot (aka S. J. Rozan) evokes personalities quickly and indelibly. Whether good-hearted, manipulative, cruel, desperate, smart, dumb, perceptive, or deluded, the personalities are strong and believable.
Jason Culp has to do a variety of accents in "Blood of the Lamb"--upper and lower class Italian, English, Hungarian, Argentine, German, and Americans from Boston and New York. It's an almost-virtuoso turn by Jason Culp. I was caught up short occasionally by some mispronunciations (I don't think that will bother a lot of other people). The main thing is that I always knew which character was speaking because of Culp's inflection--whether 100% authentic or not. And he keeps the rhythm of the book going quite masterfully. He breathes noiselessly and reads with easy fluency.
I was held by the entire story, but the ending of the novel packs a real punch. I read it two or three times just to savor it again.
I will not reveal the true nature of this story. It did start out as an enjoyable imitation of many of the similar mysteries taking Biblical characters and drawing overt connections to some modern-day conspiracies. It could not be considered a great tale, but it was moving along very well, until the very end. I must say I was profoundly disappointed in the author. He simply went much to far in his absurdities. It said to me that his author had to reach further than his abilities, and he failed miserably. I will not say DO NOT BOTHER, for some may find it less offensive, even perfectly acceptable.. I think the author chose a lazy, silly, absurd ending to what could have otherwise been a good tale.
Disappointed beyond words. Weak and absurd beyond all reason.
The narrator did a fine job. I would have had some difficulty with the Latin and Italian names and passages.
I do have an extreme reaction, but not as you ask. It is just embarrassing for the author to have chosen to end it as he did. It tells me he was either in such a hurry that he was grasping at straws, or he does not have all of the skills needed to craft a truly great story.
Such a shame. It will probably be the only one of his books I will ever "read". I cannot recommend it.were it not for the failings in the story's ending, I would have rated it much higher, but such was the nature of the final pages. Too bad.
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