I’ve read all of Steve Berry‘s printed books (not the ebooks). Until I started reading it, I had expected The Columbus Affair (New York: Ballantine Books, 2012) to be the latest in the Cotton Malone series. It’s not.
The concept and plot are interesting, but I didn’t care for the characters. None of them is really very likeable or heroic.
Steve Berry has a new Cotton Malone novel, The Emperor’s Tomb, which will be available November 23. Unfortunately, I have no idea who the emperor is in the title.
The plot of Steve Berry‘s most recent novel, The Paris Vendetta (New York: Ballantine Books-Random House, 2009), didn’t seem as complex as those of his previous novels. He didn’t tie together so many different elements, and the characters weren’t spending as much time jetting from one part of the globe to another. The majority of the action took place in Denmark, England, and France–mostly in France, which made sense since the historical focus was on Napoleon, with some references to the Merovingian kings and the Nazis.
I think Dan Brown‘s best novel is Angels & Demons followed by The Da Vinci Code and The Lost Symbol, in that order. His first two rank far behind the others. I don’t want to spoil things for people who haven’t read The Lost Symbol yet, but I was disappointed. I’m probably spoiled after recently reading so many novels by James Rollins and Steve Berry.
I wonder why it takes Brown so much longer to finish a novel than it does Rollins or Berry, when their plots are more complicated and require a research on more subjects.
The last few months, I’ve been reading, and enjoying, suspense novels by Steve Berry and James Rollins. Unfortunately, I’ve read all of Berry’s novels except The Paris Vendetta, which will be available in about a month, so I’ve been looking for other authors who write the same type of books, which remind me of The Da Vince Code and Indiana Jones–maybe with cutting-edge science and technology thrown in.
I’ve found the following authors, who seem to write in this genre, and requested the indicated books from my county library:
In The Charlemagne Pursuit (New York: Ballantine Books-Random House, 2008), as in The Alexandria Link, Steve Berry included a lot of politics, which I didn’t enjoy very much. It was fascinating, though, how he tied together a first civilization, Charlemagne, the Nazis, submarines, and Antarctica.
In his “Writer’s Note” (505-09), Berry lists some books that might be interesting:
- Gerry Kennedy and Rob Churchill, The Voynich Manuscript
- Christopher Knight and Alan Butler, Civilization One
Berry’s latest book, The Paris Vendetta, is due out December 1. I’m number 19 of 35 people who have requested it from the Jefferson County Public Library.
In Black Order (New York: Harper Collins-WilliamMorrow, 2006), the second Sigma Force novel (not counting the prequel), James Rollins only goes back a few decades in history, to the Nazis, rather than centuries as he has in the other novels that I’ve read. The Black Order was Heinrich Himmler’s SS. It’s interesting how Rollins ties the Nazi’s search for the ideal Aryan to quantum mechanics and evolution. In his “Author’s Note: Truth or Fiction,” Rollins mentions a couple of books that sound interesting:
- The Hunt for Zero Point by Nick Cook
- Quantum Evolution by Johnjoe McFadden
As I mentioned when I wrote about Steve Berry’s The Venetian Betrayal, which was published in 2007, in that novel Berry made “a passing reference to Painter Crowe from James Rollins‘ Sigma Series.” That may have been in response to Rollins’ mention in Black Order of a book store in Copenhagen owned by “an ex-lawyer from Georgia” (43), who must be Berry’s protagonist Cotton Malone.
The next book in the Sigma Series is The Judas Strain.
As I mentioned in a previous post, in Steve Berry made a reference to James Rollins‘ Sigma Series in The Venetian Betrayal. I was curious about their relationship, so I did a search. I found this video in which Berry explains how they met:
I liked The Venetian Betrayal by Steve Berry better than The Alexandria Link but not as well as some of his other books that I’ve read. Berry brought back Colin Michener from The Third Secret. However, what I found most interesting was a passing reference to Painter Crowe from James Rollins‘ Sigma Series. I learned a lot about Alexander the Great from reading this novel, and I appreciate Berry’s “Writer’s Note” where he “[separates] face from fiction” (470).
I didn’t like Steve Berry‘s The Alexandria Link as much as I did The Romanov Prophecy or The Templar Legacy, probably because of all the politics. I’m involved enough in politics in my own life that I want to get away from it in fiction.
It’s a good story with an interesting premise, and I learned more about the Library of Alexandria than I had known before. I can recommend the book unless, like me, you’re overdosed on politics.