Friday, March 24, 2017

City of Light City of Poison.

book cover
City of Light City of Poison. Murder, Magic, and the First Police Chief of Paris by Holly Tucker. W. W. Norton, 2017

" ... the first police chief of Paris faces an epidemic of murder in the late 1600s. Assigned by Louis XIV, Nicolas de La Reynie begins by clearing the streets of filth and installing lanterns throughout Paris, turning it into the City of Light.
The fearless La Reynie pursues criminals through the labyrinthine neighborhoods of the city. He unearths a tightly knit cabal of poisoners, witches, and renegade priests. As he exposes their unholy work, he soon learns that no one is safe from black magic—not even the Sun King" (from the publisher).
A highly readable and chilling tale of mystery, murder, and intrigue set during the reign of France's King Louis the 14th. While this true story reads like a novel, author and history professor Holly Tucker has meticulously researched the period, using French court records and Reynie's notes.Tucker weaves in details of daily life, culture, and politics to provide the reader with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the book's dramatic setting. A highly recommended title for those who love mystery, history/historical fiction, and narrative nonfiction.

Visit the author's website for more information on her books, reviews, and upcoming events. ALso find more information about the book at the publisher's webpage.

Thanks to NetGalley and W. W. Norton and Company for allowing me to read and review an egalley of this book. 

Saturday, June 18, 2016

The Lost Codex (OPSIG Team Black #3) by Alan Jacobson. Open Road Media, 2015.

Alan Jacobson, author of the Karen Vail and OPSIG Team Black series packs a punch with this Indiana Jones/Da Vinci Code- type spy thriller that “mirrors” today’s events.

When the US is attacked by Islamic terrorists, the Operations Support Intelligence Group (OPSIG) hits the ground running. Their mission:  find out who is behind horrific bombings in Washington D.C. and New York City.

The highly trained but unacknowledged and unsanctioned American team soon discovers troubling connections between Islamic terrorist groups and the Mexican Drug Cartel. Additionally they discover the existence of an ancient document, which, in the hands of the wrong people, could have profound and world-wide effects. At the same time, troubling issues arise over the orders the team members have received. Can they trust their superiors? Can they trust each other?

Join the team, which includes Jacobson’s character from another series, FBI profiler Karen Vail,  on their nail-biting ride from New York to Paris, London, and Israel, as they race to retrieve the ancient documents and  try to figure out who is betraying them. GIve this to adult readers who love espionage and military-type operations.

Jacobson not only has his finger on the pulse of today’s events, but  has been informed/guided by FBI and military advisors which adds the authenticity he needed to his novel. Read a fascinating interview Jacobson conducted with one of his advisors, Steve Garrett, as he tried to work out some of the dilemmas he faced in keeping the book real. Jacobson also includes a list of consultants (many military) and other resources he used in the book’s end material.

Visit Alan Jacobson’s website to find out more about the author and his works.