Strindberg's Star is a multilayered international thrill ride at breakneck pace, reminiscent of The Rule of Four.
The Arctic, 1897: Nils Strindberg crashes his hydrogen balloon during the mysterious Andrée Expedition to the North Pole.
Germany, 1942: Gruesome and inexplicable experiments are performed on concentration-camp prisoners.
Sweden, present-day: Cave diver Erik Hall finds a dead body wearing an ancient ankh, buried deep in an abandoned mine. Religious symbol expert Don Titelman seeks out Erik to study the ankh, but finds Erik dead. Don is the prime suspect, and soon he's being chased across Europe to escape a secret society that will do anything to get their hands on the ankh....
In this international best seller, each of these fascinating strands weaves together to create a mind-blowing cross-genre thriller that includes arctic explorers, a secret railroad network, Norse mythology, Nazis, and ancient symbols - and a shocking secret that's been hidden for centuries.
I like stories with crazy plots like James Rollins or Preston & Child. They fall into the pulp tradition and no one would confuse them with great literature. Dan Brown falls in that category too but I draw the line at reading Dan Brown because to me his stuff is just boring.
This books aims for something more literary. In some ways it is a character study. Sadly the main character is a bit boring. The plot often moves at glacial speeds and in fact I stopped listening for months before recently finishing it up. I am glad I did because the payoff was quite satisfying.
One pleasant surprise was when the Nazi's show up (common for these types of stories) it is done in a most original way.
The audio book has two parts (you know, "to make the download faster"). The first third of the first download is good. It gets then gets real slow for awhile only to finally pick up again in the second download. My listening to it at 1.5x speed might have added to it moving along better in the second part, If I was doing the faster speed when I listened to the first download I might have liked it better. Not all readers sound good at increased speed but this reader was quite good.
I think if you like thrillers with mixed in "unearthed arcana" and don't mind listening to higher speeds I would say it is worth a listen.
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