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Sanctus (Sancti Trilogy 1) [Paperback]

Simon Toyne
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (419 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
Price: 5.45 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

24 Nov 2011 Sancti Trilogy 1

The bestselling thriller debut of 2011 – the apocalyptic conspiracy thriller that has set the world alight…


The certainties of the modern world are about to be blown apart by a three thousand year-old conspiracy nurtured by blood and lies …

A man throws himself to his death from the oldest inhabited place on the face of the earth, a mountainous citadel in the historic Turkish city of Ruin. This is no ordinary suicide but a symbolic act. And thanks to the media, it is witnessed by the entire world.

But few understand it. For charity worker Kathryn Mann and a handful of others in the know, it is what they have been waiting for. The cowled and secretive fanatics that live in the Citadel suspect it could mean the end of everything they have built – and they will kill, torture and break every law to stop that. For Liv Adamsen, New York crime reporter, it begins the next stage of a journey into the heart of her own identity.

And at that journey's end lies a discovery that will change EVERYTHING …

SANCTUS is an apocalyptic conspiracy thriller like no other – it re-sets the bar for excitement and fascination, and marks the debut of a major talent in Simon Toyne.

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Frequently Bought Together

Sanctus (Sancti Trilogy 1) + The Key (Sancti Trilogy 2) + The Tower (Sancti Trilogy 3)
Price For All Three: 12.80

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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (24 Nov 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007391587
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007391585
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.8 x 3.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (419 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 34,222 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Simon Toyne was born in the North East of England in 1968.

After nearly twenty years working in commercial television he quit his job and took seven months off to write a novel. It took two and a half years to finish it. Fortunately SANCTUS got picked up by an agent and then by lots of publishers all over the world. He has no idea what would have happened if it hadn't. He is now regularly compared, both favourably and unfavourably, to Dan Brown, even though he does not possess a tweed jacket.

You can find out more at

Product Description


'A fast moving, thoroughly enjoyable, adventure – plenty of action, plenty of intrigue and a wonderfully imaginative reinterpretation of a slice of religious history. The sort of novel to devour in one sitting’ KATE MOSSE

‘A cool, confident debut … A talented new writer who instinctively grasps the broad rules of superior action thrillers and adapts them with pace, grace, humour and a keen eye for cinematic effect’ DAILY TELEGRAPH

‘In this thriller Toyne creates an intriguing and engaging centrepiece in The Citadel … Relentless pace … An exciting and interesting read. I look forward to returning to Ruin, where there are plenty of stories waiting to be told’ THE SUN

‘High concept, debut conspiracy thrillers don’t come with higher expectations than this. Hard to think of it as a debut, better to think of it as the beginning of a massive new adventure, and a so-long to Dan Brown’ MIRROR

About the Author

Simon Toyne graduated from Goldsmiths College in London with a degree in English and Drama then worked in television for almost twenty years before becoming a novelist. SANCTUS is his first book and also the first volume of the Ruin trilogy. You can find out more at

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
92 of 101 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Book of the year! 21 Jun 2011
A perfect Dan Brown style holiday book. But don't be put off by the genré if it's not for you. it's got something for everyone (even good writing): I enjoyed the medieval and pre-medieval religious angles but it also has technology, forensics, puzzles, action, adventure, the odd home made bomb, love (and even skips the inevitably crass sex scenes that always seem to bruise good books.)

Very very ingenious from start to finish. Believable and ingenious make the story work. I had to ration myself so that the book didn't run out too quickly. This is not my favorite genre by any account, yet it hooked me from the start. It's not just a gripping (you won't find me writing 'unputdownable') tale but is well written too: I'm a sucker for bruised orange skylines and clouds described as white beasts, weighed down by their own leaden hearts. It's an easy read too, there is always something happening, and despite the many characters, you are never left wondering who any one is. Get it, you won't be disappointed (but you might ignore your family for a while).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top marks Mr Toyne! 9 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book bypassed me completely when it was released in 2011 but I recently heard a couple of interviews with the author promoting the third part of the trilogy which came out in April this year, and although he didn't go into a great amount of detail about the plot, there were enough `hooks' mentioned to get my interest.

Firstly, I love the title. The word `Sanctus' actually means `holy' or `holy one' and The Sanctus is a part of the Catholic Mass. It is such an evocative word to me on so many levels, conjuring up images of crumbling churches and monasteries with flickering candlelight behind stained glass windows. I can just smell the incense and see and hear the robed, hooded Monks singing the Gregorian chant. The cover of my version of the novel captures this perfectly.

Secondly, Simon Toyne's own story piqued my interest. He is a British writer and Sanctus is his debut novel. In 2007 he decided to quit his job and spend 6 months writing in France to try and fulfil his lifelong ambition to become a writer. He said in the interview I heard that he had no idea whether he was any good, but he knew that if he tried to write alongside his existing career it would never work. It was `all or nothing'. Thank goodness he decided to give it a go...

Lastly, the blurb says:


Liv Adamsen is a New York crime reporter, Kathryn Mann a charity worker. They are very different people, but their fate is bound together by one man's desperate act.

With the world's media watching, a robed man has thrown himself from the top of the oldest inhabited place on earth, an ancient citadel in Turkey. For some it's a sign of great events to come.
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41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An easy but intriguing read.. 26 May 2011
By Lili76
I am NOT a fan of Dan Brown but do love ancient history, am interested in religion and culture and enjoy a good mystery. This book combines them all. The writer has done a good job of setting the scene and providing the background information without drowning the reader in too much detail.
I enjoyed the twists and turns and the fast pace of plot although I found the ending rather abrupt but this was maybe because i was really getting into the story and didn't want it to end so soon!! I look forward to the next book.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping from first page to the last 3 May 2011
This really was the best book I've read in years. I was gripped throughout and couldn't put it down.
Can't wait for the next installment.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good read.... 18 Feb 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Its one of those books you can not put down until you reach the very last word, then you start looking for the next book!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping 3 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
wow, what a book! if you are after something that you cant put down this is the one for you! I just had to keep going to found out what the secret was. I spent the few days i was reading the book trying to think of what it could be but in the end it was a really original idea that goes on to be explored even more in the second and third novels. I bought and read the second novel within the week and am waiting for the conclusive third book this spring....come on hurry up Simon Toyne!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars could not put this book down 25 Feb 2013
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
a very good read full of twists and of those books you just cannot put down.looking foreward to the next installment.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars exciting reading 5 Feb 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
a well written, easy to read book. The story flows,so well, and was so descriptive i could imagine the buildings and the people. Having also read the follow-up book, i am eagerly awaiting the final book in the trilogy.
Definately an author to be added to my list of favourites,
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Read the full trilogy & enjoyed thoroughly
Published 2 days ago by Jon Howard
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read
Short chapters, which is my preferred style.
Fast paced storyline.
The ending leaves you waiting for the next in the series. Read more
Published 4 days ago by Mark0963
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Bit hard to follow at times, but ok.
Published 4 days ago by Alison
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping, great storyline & a real page-turner
amazing, fabulously good read. I normally go for this type of story in film format not book but this one had me gripped so much I hardly slept until I finished it. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Very readable, and very up to date
Published 7 days ago by Unknown
5.0 out of 5 stars sanctus
Fast paced, plenty of action and addictive. Just ordered the second book and already looking forward to the third book.
Published 22 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting
This is definitely a mans book, but it is very good to read. It keeps you wondering, keeps you thinking and keeps you on the edge of your toes.
Published 1 month ago by Carmen Marris
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Thriller
This grips from the first line and takes you to a world of malevolent evil that is so not the Barchester Chronicles. Evil incarnate stalks and frequently. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Cllr Chris
4.0 out of 5 stars decent read
Interesting angle in this book, was a good read on those long commutes. its part of a trilogy i havent finished yet but part 1 was good enough to encourage me to buy the rest
Published 1 month ago by mark singers
4.0 out of 5 stars A page turner
A novel similar in concept to Dan Browne's The Da Vinci Code, but far better written (but to be fair, so are most novels). Read more
Published 1 month ago by Bob Wagstaff
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