Friday, February 27, 2009

The Illumination

Natalie Landau, a museum curator with an expertise in Mesopotamian protective amulets and magical beliefs, has received a puzzling gift from her sister Dana--a necklace with a blue evil eye pendant on it. The Evil Eye is a symbol of protection common throughout the world, with a history connecting it to many religions.

When Natalie learns Dana was murdered only hours after sending the gift, she begins to think her evil eye amulet had something to do with her sister’s death. As she races to discover the origin of the pendant, Natalie is sucked into an international battle between powerful religious factions, each battling for the eye, which turns out to be far more valuable—and far more powerful--than she could ever imagine.

When Natalie receives a small gift from her sister, from Iraq where Dana is a reporter for a major news station, Natalie feels like there might be hope to salvage their shaky relationship. But when she finds out that Dana was killed, and her cameraman is missing, Natalie cannot rest until she finds the truth behind the antique necklace and pouch. And she's hoping that Joe D'Amato will be able to help her.

I'm a sucker when it comes to action/adventure/intrigue type of stories, and mix religion into it I'm a very happy reader. I absolutely love the genre, and truth be told, I don't think I'll tire of it anytime soon. So it isn't surprising that I was hooked right from the beginning. I couldn't put the book down...good thing it was a P.A. day and the kids kept busy with video and board games...because I needed the time to read.

Compared to the authors' previous book, The Book of Names, is was more violent. Which within the context of the story I found that it wasn't out of place, but in my opinion there was a little too much of it. I think it may have helped my need to finish the book, I wanted the good guys to win. I enjoyed the explanation of the Light, the way it was created and the reason behind the various groups wanting it. I liked both Natalie and Joe, they made a good partnership, but it would have been nice to have more background on other characters.

The Illumination by Jill Gregory and Karen Tintori (4/5) Suspense; Published: St. Martin's Press (2009); 2009 100 + Reading Challenge (27); 2009 Support Your Local Library (22); 2009 Pub Challenge (5);

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