Friday, September 22, 2006

Book of the Dead, Preston and Child

The "Book of the Dead" is written by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child. It is the third book of the Pendergast trilogy. I found that reading them in sequence put the story together better, but they can be read anyway you like. Both Preston & Child are authors of their own, but when one pairs them up as a duo, they become extra ordinary. They are very descriptive in the settings, it makes one feel like they are there. The personalities of the characters are done in a way that the reader becomes familiar with them, you become one with their personality, you are part of the story. The only problem with this story is it is very predictable.

The story starts with the New York Museum of Natural History receiving a package in the mail. Upon delivery of the package, a brown powder is leaking from a corner. It is thought to be a bio-chemical, anthrax. The hazmat is summoned and all hell takes place. With further examination, the package contains ground up diamonds. A couple of months prior, the worlds most valuable diamond collection was stolen from the museum, and this was all that was left, powder. Why? The museum tries to cover up the story but the news media finds the truth and published it in the paper. There was an outcry of the public! It was not good.

Collopy, the director of the museum, held a meeting with his board to do something about the outcry. He gets a message that ten million euros would be donated to the museum if they would put the money to use in the restoration of the Tomb of Senef. This was the way out of the scandal of the diamonds. They would have a big opening of the tomb, with invitations to all the high dignitaries, mayor, governor and many celebrities.

Meanwhile, agent Aloysius Pentergast was incarcerated in a maximum security prison, framed by his evil brother Diogenes for the murder of several people. Aloysius is very positive in his thinking and prepares for the best. His friends are trying to spring him from prison.

Diogenes has a big plan to create havoc with the museum and the city of New York. With Aloysius out of the way, he has a green light. With the catastrophic opening of the tomb of Senef, Diogenes is faced by his brother in a thrilling, page turning ending that will leave one brother dead, and surprises that makes one think.

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