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Publisher's Summary

“They didn’t have to kill him…. He never drank from the altar of bones.”

Cryptic dying words from a murdered homeless woman in present-day San Francisco unlock a decades-buried secret that changed history. Now a pair of ruthless assassins are sent to cut the few living "loose ends." And a young, resourceful woman on the run encounters a determined man with his own connected past and vengeful agenda.

Forced to partner for survival and answers, a fast-paced and deadly game of cat and mouse ensues, taking them across the globe from the winding streets of Paris to the faded palaces of Budapest to the frozen lakes of Mongolia... where destiny, passion, and further betrayal await them.

The Altar of Bones has it all: The Russian mob. KGB spies. Presidential assasination. A doomed Hollywood legend. Deathbed confessions. Corrosive power. Shattered families. Guardians of an ancient religious icon housing a secret others will kill to possess. The dark promise of immortality. And it delivers on its ambitious premise to leave you stunned and breathless at the end.

©2011 Phillip Carter (P)2011 Simon & Schuster

Critic Reviews

The Altar of Bones is one of the most stunning novels I've ever read. From superbly etched characters to a plot rich with twists and heart-stopping action, Altar is an incredible reading experience you can't miss.” (New York Times best-selling author Catherine Coulter)

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.7 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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Story

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  • Overall
  • Jack
  • Carson City, NV, United States
  • 03-27-11

Fast Moving Exciting Read

Book lends itself to a fast paced, action packed, shootem up, chase movie. Although it is an unbelievable, far out drama, it is a fun read. The narrator/reader is excellent. Good plot but one has to suspend belief for much of the action scenes.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Excellent read

Well written, interesting characters and historical background. Highly recommend. Did not want book to end, even after 17 hours. At (1) credit, it is a super buy. Enjoy!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Brandon
  • CORNWALL, NY, United States
  • 05-23-11

Not Overly predictible

Overall, the tale was engrossing. I did not like the sporadic swallowing sounds from the narrator, I could have completely done without that. As for certain parts of the tale, the twists were a little predictible, but it was exciting action and often times palpable. (Spelling? lol)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Frederick
  • Irvine, CA, United States
  • 04-03-11

Perils of Pauline

Okay. I was vastly disappointed. The concept and multiple plot lines seamed like a winner until the book deteriorated into – yes – the Perils of Pauline. Our poor heroine( just like Pauline in the silent movies) escapes trains, assassins, machine guns fired point blank, ex-KGB operatives and a homicidal witch – err substitute “b”. It’s high/low point is when she and her “partner” race headlong through a seven layer wedding cake (I can’t make this stuff up). This idea had such promise and failed so miserably,.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Unrealistic but entertaining

I read this book in paperback years ago. I remember enjoying it and was looking forward to listening to it. I thought my husband would love it but he could not get through the first few hours. I enjoyed it on Audible as much as I did reading it. It was completely unrealistic and a little lengthy but a great storyline.












  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Mystery, intrigue are just fillers for chase

What was most disappointing about Philip Carter’s story?

Did not enjoy the endless chase from killers who always seem to be able to find their prey. Just seem to go on forever. The story, or mystery was treated as occasional filler.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The plot seemed to resolve all issues in the end.

  • Overall
  • Shannon
  • Madawaska, ME, United States
  • 04-22-11

Great Listen

I had a little trouble getting into the narrator's voice at first, but the story is well written and captured me before long. I love the layers of the story and the various points of view the story was told from - it was a nice variation on the international intrigue we're so used to. I was very pleasantly surprised at the depth of character development & that the plot was well thought out and did not fray and lose focus at the end - especially for a debut novel. All in all a great listen.