Author: Glen Craney
Title: The Virgin of the Wind Rose
Genre: Historical Fiction, Drama, Thriller, Mystery, & Action/adventure
First Published: 2014
Where I Got It: My shelf (Given to me by the author/publisher for my honest and unbiased opinion)
While investigating the murder of an American missionary in Ethiopia, rookie State Department lawyer Jaqueline Quartermane becomes obsessed with a magical word square found inside an underground church guarding the tomb of the biblical Adam.
Drawn into a web of esoteric intrigue, she and a roguish antiquities thief named Elymas must race an elusive and taunting mastermind to find the one relic needed to resurrect Solomon's Temple. A trail of cabalistic clues leads them to the catacombs of Rome, the crypt below Chartres Cathedral, a Masonic shaft in Nova Scotia, a Portuguese shipwreck off Sumatra, and the caverns under the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
Intertwined with this modern mystery-thriller, a parallel duel is waged:
The year is 1452. One of the most secretive societies in history, Portugal's Order of Christ, is led by a reclusive visionary, Prince Henry the Navigator. He and his medieval version of NASA merged with the CIA scheme to foil their archenemies, the Inquisitor Torquemada and Queen Isabella of Castile, who plan to bring back Christ for the Last Judgment by ridding the world of Jews, heretics, and unbelievers.
Separated by half a millennium, two conspiracies to usher in the Tribulations promised by the Book of Revelation dovetail in this fast-paced thriller to expose the world's most explosive secret: The true identity of Christopher Columbus and the explorer's connection to those now trying to spark the End of Days.
The first four chapters had me really worried. There was so much going on and I was unsure how I felt. The POV jumped around so much and the language was so stiff, that I had a hard time connecting to the story. However, I am one to never give up.
Once things settled down a bit and the language loosened up and I was able to get a grasp of what was going on this was entertaining. I actually really got into the story and was not sure what the outcome was going to be. There were multiple mysteries/conspiracies running around that were all connected somehow. I really wanted to figure out the connection between the past POV in the 1400s/1500s and the present day POV. I had a theory and I was close-ish.
As I mentioned the writing style at first was extremely stiff, but once the action really took off then the writing loosened up. It flowed nicely and it was a quick read. Yes, there is a lot of information pouring out at some points, but due to the language used it was easy to grasp and keep going. I worry about historical mysteries and thriller novels, because it can be overwhelming sometimes and rather boring I'll admit. However, the author kept my attention and kept me hooked to the story.
UGGGGHHHHHH the ending! Not a fan. Not happy. It's a cliffhanger and I hated the fate of one of the characters. PLEASE FIX IT! I just grew to like that character. :( SO SAD. SO TRAGIC. I cannot say, but UGH the feels.
DO NOT TRUST ANYONE! No one and nothing is as it seems. Messed with my brain! It was good that it kept me on my toes.
In the end, this had a rough start for me, but it got better. I'm weary of thrillers and mysteries, but the author made it easy to grasp and it flowed nice and quick. I managed to get this done in a matter of a couple days. I HAD TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENED NEXT! The ending made me mad and sad, but I am curious to see what happens next. PLEASE, PLEASE FIX IT!!
Well, I recommend this to those that like historical mysteries mixed with modern espionage. In the end, I shall stamp this with 3 stars.