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The Alchemist's Secret (Ben Hope, Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Scott Mariani
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (530 customer reviews)

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Book Description


Ben Hope lives on the edge. A former élite member of the SAS, Ben is tortured by a tragedy from his past and now devotes his life to finding kidnapped children.

When Ben is recruited to locate an ancient manuscript which could save a dying child, he embarks on the deadliest quest of his life.

The document is alleged to contain the formula for the elixir of life, discovered by the brilliant alchemist Fulcanelli decades before. But it soon becomes apparent that others are hunting this most precious of treasures - for far more evil ends.

When the secrets of alchemy hidden within the pages remain impenetrable, Ben teams up with beautiful American scientist Dr Roberta Ryder to crack the code.

It seems that everyone - from the Nazis during WW2 and powerful Catholic organisation Gladius Domini - wants to unearth the secrets of immortality.

The trail leads Ben and Roberta from Paris to the ancient Cathar strongholds of the Languedoc, where an astonishing secret has lain hidden for centuries…

Books In This Series (10 Books)
Complete Series

  • Product Description


    ‘Fans of Dan Brown will love this thrilling adventure.’

    ‘Establishes Scott Mariani as an author to watch.’
    M.J. Rose, international bestselling author of The Reincarnationist

    ‘Packed with dark intrigue, danger around every corner, bullets flying, sexual tension, and an endless assault of nasty villains bent on stopping ex-SAS Ben Hope … everything a thriller should be and more.’
    Joe Moore, international bestselling co-author of The Grail Conspiracy

    About the Author

    Scott Mariani is the author of the worldwide-acclaimed action-adventure thriller series featuring ex-SAS hero Ben Hope. Scott’s novels have topped the bestseller charts in his native Britain and are translated into over twenty languages worldwide. To date the Ben Hope series comprises the #1 Bestseller The Alchemist’s Secret, The Mozart Conspiracy, The Doomsday Prophecy (published in the USA as The Hope Vendetta), The Heretic’s Treasure, The Shadow Project, The Lost Relic, The Sacred Sword and the forthcoming The Armada Legacy (May 2013). Scott is also the author of the bestselling Kindle eBook novella, Passenger 13. Scott’s novels have been described as ‘James Bond meets Jason Bourne with a historical twist’.

    Product details

    • Format: Kindle Edition
    • File Size: 497 KB
    • Print Length: 499 pages
    • Publisher: Avon (5 Jun. 2009)
    • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B002UZ5JJK
    • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Not Enabled
    • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (530 customer reviews)
    • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,217 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    More About the Author

    Scott Mariani is the author of the worldwide-acclaimed action-adventure thriller series featuring ex-SAS hero Ben Hope, which has sold over a million copies in Scott's native UK alone and is also translated into over 20 languages. His books have been described as 'James Bond meets Jason Bourne, with a historical twist'. The first Ben Hope book, THE ALCHEMIST'S SECRET, spent six straight weeks at #1 on Amazon's Kindle chart, and all the others have been Sunday Times bestsellers.

    Scott was born in Scotland, studied in Oxford and now lives and writes in a remote setting in rural west Wales. When not writing, he can be found bouncing about the country lanes in an ancient Land Rover, wild camping in the Brecon Beacons or engrossed in his hobbies of astronomy, photography and target shooting (no dead animals involved!).

    In addition to writing thrillers, he's also an avid fan of horror, and his most recent publication, available exclusively on Amazon, is HOUSE OF MALICE, a shocking and terrifying novella based partly on some of Scott's own personal experiences as a paranormal investigator. You can find out more about Scott and his work on his official website,

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    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    268 of 276 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars A very lucky find! 10 Aug. 2011
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    I bought this Kindle version by chance after downloading the Kindle app on my iPad. To be honest the reason I got it was that it was very cheap and I wanted to test out to see if the app worked!

    As there was nothing on TV I decided to read a few pages - AND WAS GRIPPED! I could not put the book down and even though it got into the early hours and I had work the next day, I kept trying to take in more and more pages, each one keeping me on the edge of my seat.

    The background to the story is captivating and much is baseed on hisorical fact but with a good dose of mystery and intrigue. The main character (Ben Hope, an ex SAS Major) is very likeable and the array of characters he comes into contact with range from interesting to ruthlessly sadistic! I also loved the way his investigation takes him through different countries and settings.

    It annoys me when people dismiss this book as a mock up of the De Vinci Code. Why other authors cannot take a similar line and make it their own is beyond me. I for one could not get stuck into the De Vinci Code, however, The Alchemists Secret seduces you from the word go. i thoroughly enjoyed it and will be reading the rest of the Ben Hope series in the next few weeks.
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    138 of 144 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Unputdownable! ! Great stuff! 12 Mar. 2008
    I've just finished reading this - if you enjoy the DVC type yarns, you'll really enjoy this!! Better - in my opinion - than, say, "The Templar Legacy" by Steve Berry (and I thought that was good!!)
    There's plenty of fast-flowing action, believable characters, mystery, deciphering of old manuscripts, codes, artefacts, murder, plots, torture, historical interest, slowly kindling romance, etc.,etc..
    I've never read a book as quickly as this, as I found it so intriguing, exciting, and enjoyable that I didn't want to put it down!
    I would highly recommend this.
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    10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Thought Provoking and Enjoyable 24 Nov. 2011
    Format:Kindle Edition
    Plot and characters count for me in the appreciation of a good book, as does a gripping storyline. I found all of these things in The Alchemist's Secret. I found the middle portions of the book in particular very well done, which is a rarity, since it's precisely here that most prose lines stop to catch their breath before mustering their energies for a run toward the finish. I would have liked to see a bit more verve at the end of the book, which seemed just a touch flat, though I'm possibly being somewhat harsh here. This is a book, though, that I'm putting on my "read again" list, which I assure you is a short one. Consider this book a solid recommendation.
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    114 of 126 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars The Alchemist 's Secret 11 April 2008
    This is another story with a seek the treasure in Rennes-le-Chateau, but is well written and entertaining, but not as gripping as Dan Brown or Kate Mosse novel. In this book the hero Ben accepts a contract to find the Fulcanelli manuscript, which is believed to contain the formula for the elixor of life. His hunt attracts the unwelcome attention of Gladius Domini, a catholic organisation, whose leader seeks the same gaol. Ben and his accomplice Dr Roberta Ryder and Gladius Domini leave a bloody trail across France, with the story reaching it's climax at an ancient Cathar temple close to Rennes-le-chateau. There are notes at the back of book informing the reader about the facts behind the story. A good read.
    Comment | 
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    36 of 40 people found the following review helpful
    By kdl
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    I don't read this kind of book normally, not a girlie thing........... I thought !!! Got it because it sounded half interesting and cost 49p ! Best 49p I've ever spent. Couldn't put the book down, devoured every word and learned quite a lot. I downloaded the next 5 of the series within 5 mins of buying this one.
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    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Treasure hunt with a difference. 6 May 2012
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    Just when you think you've read a familiar format of ex-SAS meets up with gourgeous academic, dodges criminals and generally getting embroiled in a treasure hunt/chase peppered with underlying frustrations of romance and doing good, you kinda know what you are expecting.

    I have to say as a fan of Andy Mcdermott I thought I would give Scott Mariani a go and, to be honest, as a stop gap between getting the latest Andy Mc. book. I wasn't dissapointed! I found this a real page turner and the way it all unfolded gave me a good perspective of Ben Hope's world. Being set mainly in France, the book had a lovely, laid back kinda feel to it, even though it was all about intrigue, drama, conspiracy, thrills and the odd shoot out!

    There were the odd occaisional cheesy bits but hey, that can be said of most books of this genre not to mention films too.

    The chapters were snappy and short - they didn't waffle on like so many can do, which was great for reading at night when I felt I wanted to get a chapter in before falling asleep. (Quite often read two or three!)

    Good series - I will be reading more of the Ben Hope set.
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    10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
    Once you have begun reading The Fulcanelli Manuscript, it is impossible to do anything else other than finish it! It is a 'read in a day' kind of book, causing you to feel all extremes of resentment towards other activities which prevent you from reading it!

    It is an intelligent thriller, fast paced, action packed and full to the brim with historical secrets and scientific fascinations. Scott Mariani captivates his reader from the outset, refusing to let go or give anything away until the very end! The description of the locations and the character's relationship with their surroundings makes this novel appear cinematic. You live the danger and intensity, becoming as hooked on the book as Ben was on saving Ruth!

    I strongly recommend The Fulcanelli Manuscript. It is truly addictive and I wait with great anticipation for Ben Hope to be brought to life again by this wonderful author!
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    5.0 out of 5 stars Intense until the very end
    A fantastic read. Could not put it down. The characters came to life from the very start. What about the ending suspense all the way. Read more
    Published 6 days ago by Sam
    4.0 out of 5 stars Dave
    Little far fetched but keeps you reading a gripping plot good story line ordering next book .good author buy again
    Published 12 days ago by Dave. . LONDON
    5.0 out of 5 stars Scott Mariani is there no end to this guys talent ...
    Scott Mariani is there no end to this guys talent. Once opened his books are difficult to put down. Compulsive fan of Ben Hope
    Published 14 days ago by Dennis Timmis
    5.0 out of 5 stars A bit like Steve berry books
    Came across this by accident but thoroughly enjoyed it from start to finish.
    Will definitely read more of ben hope adventures
    Published 15 days ago by Maureen118
    5.0 out of 5 stars A can't put down book
    If you like 'ancient conspiracy' novels you'll love this book
    Published 17 days ago by tinkytinca
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    Happy with book and seller . Would recommend
    Published 21 days ago by MRS M A JAMES
    3.0 out of 5 stars ... body count is too high althiugh the research is good and the...
    The body count is too high althiugh the research is good and the character is interesting.
    Published 28 days ago by ISABELLA M. MACKENZIE
    4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping stuff! It's well written and entertaining, it's ...
    Gripping stuff! It's well written and entertaining, it's not on the same lines as the Da Vinci code for me, but it's still interesting and adrenaline fueled enough for me to get my... Read more
    Published 28 days ago by Mimyx
    5.0 out of 5 stars Ben Hope Triumphs Again
    But you never expected anything different did you? Another bumpy ride for Ben with action and mystery all the way. Once started I couldn't stop. No boring bits. Excellent.
    Published 1 month ago by 60's Child
    4.0 out of 5 stars A good read .. A page turner
    First book I've read by Scott Mariiani and what a good book it is. I picked it by chance but thoroughly recommend it and will definitely read more by the same author.
    Published 1 month ago by Frances Baker
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