An earthquake in Masada, Israel, kills hundreds and reveals a tomb buried in the heart of the mountain. A trio of investigators - Sergeant Jordan Stone, a military forensic expert; Father Rhun Korza, a Vatican priest; and Dr. Erin Granger, a brilliant but disillusioned archaeologist - are sent to explore the macabre discovery, a subterranean temple holding the crucified body of a mummified girl.
But a brutal attack at the site sets the three on the run, thrusting them into a race to recover what was once preserved in the tomb's sarcophagus: a book rumored to have been written by Christ's own hand, a tome that is said to hold the secrets to His divinity. The enemy who hounds them is like no other, a force of ancient evil directed by a leader of impossible ambitions and incalculable cunning.
©2013 James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers
I love James Rollins's Sigma Force novels but was very hesitant to read/listen to this story because many times co-written books are choppy. That can be ok if reading, but when listening, it can be very disturbing to hear two different writing styles. This novel was seamless. It was as near to a perfect novel as I have ever read.
I was finally swayed when my husband said that I "must read" this novel. My husband despises vampire fiction (although he loves James Rollins). He was up reading the Kindle version well into the night for several evenings. So I downloaded it onto my iPod and turned it on. And was hooked from the first five minutes. I became anti-social because people were disturbing my reading/listening time. It took me less than three days to listen to this novel; all while working and taking care of busy kids' schedules.
I won't do spoilers because I go out of my way not to do so, but the main theme behind this book mixes the history of the Roman Catholic Church with that Eastern Europe and Masada and does so in such a way that each new plot twist causes a quick rewind to make sure that the authors really DID write that passage.
I have also now listened to the second book and am eager for the third in the series. I did find the second book a little stretched in the credibility department, but this is a GREAT series.
This production needed better direction, a better narrator, and possible recording equipment somewhat later than the 1960's.
I generally enjoy James Rollins. His stories are preposterous and fun. Sort of, kind of werewolves and sort of, kind of vampire priests along with several other bizarre additions (don't want to add any spoilers) just requires too much suspension of disbelief. Probably could have handled it had the narration not been bloody awful.
The narration was truly awful. I did not say narrator to be clear only because any direction that would allow this overly tremulous and histrionic performance, and muddy, barely discernible production to go forward is to blame. This was like listening to an overly dramatic scout leader telling scary stories around the campfire with cotton stuffed in his mouth.
I somehow managed to get through this and couldn't wait for it to end. I will not be putting myself through Book 2.
It's rare that I hate an audio book and I hated this one. The story was beyond preposterous and the narration was mind boggling terrible. I thought my hearing had gone bad until about the middle of part 2 when all of a sudden the treble went up and I could understand what was being said. And then I realized how dumb the story was. I have loved every James Rollins book, Sigma Force or not, but this one, ugh. Maybe he needs to ditch the collaborator.
Okay, it's different for James Rollins. He does like history and science, and then to go beyond the bounds. In this one, he goes far afield. I like the idea of vampire priests, the speculation of alternative histories. The story is interesting, and always kept me guessing. It had many surprises, twists, and turns. It is the beginning of a new series, with new characters. They are well developed and likable.
Christian Baskous does a good job with voices and accents. He makes the story believable, and makes it move.
I am already listening to the next one, and hope there are more.
Never thought James Rollins would write a book that was so slow & boring. This book really went nowhere & I did not come close to finishing.
Would recommend don't waste your $ or credits
Christian Basdous is someone I won't listen to again. He just reads with no inflections. There are so many out there who could do a much better job reading Rollins books .
The story is good, but a little shallow.
I am a huge fan of Rollins, but I'll pass going forward.
I don't like vampire books and didn't know this was one by the description.
71 year old avid reader using either my eyes or ears. I make earrings that I donate to shelters and while I work, I listen to wonderful books. I also keep in mind that you have to kiss frogs to find princes - time's too short to bother with losers.
I really liked the story, although you REALLY have to suspend disbelief. The one drawback is that it doesn't end. You need to read the next book to tie up lots of very loose ends. I don't think this has to discourage you, just be warned.
Better story line. The story went nowhere.
The narrator tried too hard. Every sentence he read was like the world was coming to an end. Just read the book normally --- too much hyperbole.
Impatience -- wanting it to end already -- yeah, I know I could have just stopped listened but wanted to just finish it.
Save your money.
Truly high, it travels through history has immortals of all kinds, and honors Christ.
Rune and Erin
If you like James Rollins, Clive Cussler and the Preston and Child novels you will find this highly entertaining.
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