By Tom Knox
A gripping high-concept thriller for fans of Dan Brown and Sam Bourne.
In the sunburnt deserts of eastern Turkey, archaeologists are unearthing a stone temple, the world’s most ancient building. When Journalist Rob Luttrell is sent to report on the dig, he is intrigued to learn that someone deliberately buried the site 10,000 years ago. Why?
Meanwhile, in London, a bizarre attack is baffling the police. When a weird killing takes place on the Isle of Man, followed by another in rural Dorset, DC Mark Forrester begins to discern a curious pattern in these apparently random murders.
What weaves together these two stories is the Genesis Secret: a revelation so shocking it may threaten the social structure of the world. Only one man knows the secret, and he is intent on destroying the evidence before it can be uncovered.
Spanning the globe from the ruined castles of Ireland to the desolate wastes of Kurdistan, Tom Knox’s intense and compelling thriller weaves together genuine historical evidence, scientific insights and Biblical mysteries into an electrifying tale that grips the reader mercilessly from beginning to end.
This book started out promising enough. It had all the things I liked: archeology, mystery, artifacts, mysterious deaths and murders, history, biblical history. And the first half did pretty well living up to my expectations.
But somewhere around the halfway point of the book, I began to feel I was reading two separate stories: the story in Turkey/the Middle East and the story in the UK. And when the story in the ME started to resolve, I really felt that the two stories would never join up properly. All of the characters even moved to the UK, which really made me think the story was going to resolve there. But no.
I would definitely say that the threads of the two stories were not skillfully woven. More like knotted together because they wouldn’t stay otherwise. At the eleventh hour, the ME plot got new life. But at that point, the reader is just kind of confused.
When the Genesis Secret is actually revealed, it comes much too late for me to actually feel that journey to get to it was actually worthwhile. And then the evidence gets destroyed.
Also, it should be noted that this book makes heavy use of themes of human sacrifice. And that eventually, as we go through the book, the reader gets to witness some rather heavy scenes of human torture and sacrifice. I’m not sure what it says about society, but judging from the other reviews I read, the average thriller reader (myself included) finds torture and graphic depictions of human sacrifice much harder to swallow than graphic murder and violence of a more standard fare e.g. getting shot in the head, blown up, strangled, impaled, etc. So whatever that actually says about us, the human torture scenes are extremely difficult to get through. I can guarantee you won’t get those images out of your head for a while. Shudder.
Two final things I really disliked about this book:
One, the psychopathic killer talked way, way, waaayyy too much. Pages and pages of monologue. He probably spoke more than the two main characters put together, but squished into a very short space of the plot.
Two, the resolution of the book is literally delivered as a monologue from one character to another. That’s just lazy writing.
Overall, don’t waste your time with this one. It’s not the worst I’ve ever read in this genre (that crown still goes to Jack West Jr.), but it’s far from the best.