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3.6 out of 5 stars39
3.6 out of 5 stars
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 5 December 2010
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Khoury's book opens in 13th century Constantinople with the armies of the fourth crusade laying siege to the city. A small band of Templars infiltrate the the imperial library and make away with 3 chests laden with documents which have the potential to rock the foundations of the Christian faith to their very core.

Fast forward to the present day where FBI agent Reilly who, in order to rescue his girlfriend Tess, is co-erced into breaking into the Vatican's Secret Archives by a phsycopathic Iranian agent who is determined to retrieve the lost works for himself.

What follows is a reasonably enjoyable romp around the Vatican and the near East, as Reilly and Tess race against their adversary to uncover the location and nature of the lost treasure. It's bloody and fast-paced with the action split between the thirteenth century and the present day. Whilst it's generally good fun, I found it all just a tad too implausible for my liking - with an FBI agent leaving in his wake a trail of destruction and a bodycount that would strain the most cordial of diplomatic relationships, not to mention the ridiculous ease with which clues, seven centuries old, are located and unearthed fantastically intact. It's probably not going to win any literary awards but having said that, if you're looking for a holiday read with which to whittle away those tedious in-flight hours - you probably can't go too far wrong with this!

* The Templars have something to do with everything.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 6 February 2011
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I always thought of Raymond Khoury being a significant upgrade on Dan Brown, with his twists and turns being better thought out and having more of a sense that his books are considering their audience, sadly this trend seems to have been reversed with the Templar Salvation. I personally found this book to have far too much of a screenplay feel, that coupled with characters that I struggled with empathising with made the whole novel just feel a little flat compared to his other work.

Although I wasn't totally blown away by his previous novel, The Sign, I was really impressed in how it introduced something a little left field, something I hadn't considered in literary narrative but everything about the Templar Salvation screamed "been there, done that" and frankly I expect better from someone I admire.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 6 October 2011
This is an excellent adventure story, which quickly engages the reader and holds the attention through 500 action-packed pages. At the same time, it raises some thought-provoking observations on how Christianity has evolved, and how the dogma of major religions reflects political rather than spiritual necessities.

When I started the book I was a little bit trepidatious to be reading yet another tale of secrets from the Knights Templar being exposed in modern times. This fashionable seam of subject matter must be close to being worked out, and it's a credit to Khoury that he has managed to extract another fine adventure, even if there are times when the echoes of his earlier book are perhaps a bit obvious, especially in the nature of the revealed secrets, the historical narrative and the watery denouement. Even if there may be scope for a third outing for the central characters, it needs to be against a different backdrop.

Refreshingly Khoury avoids making his heroes into supermen, but the same is not quite true of his villains, all of whom seem to be well-resourced single-minded psychopaths one step ahead of the good guys. A bit more variety there would also help.

Khoury writes well, much better than Dan Brown or some of his other competitors, and the book never lost my focus or interest. The action is well paced, with occasional explosive sequences of high drama. These feel slightly like the the author has an eye on the future film script, but are plausible and reasonably easy to follow. However as much as the action I enjoyed his observations on the formalisation of Christianity by the Romans under Constantine, and the extension of these ideas into yet more possible roles for the mysterious Knights Templar.

This is a thoroughly enjoyable book, with a bit more depth than some others of its genre. I just hope that the author now has the courage to develop a bit more subject matter variety for his excellent writing.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 17 February 2011
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a sequel to his last book `The Last Templar' and finds our intrepid hero Sean Reilly and his heroine Tess Chaykin off on another adventure in search of old manuscripts. These had been in the keeping of the Templars in the 1200's and had disappeared, their fate unknown until a Turkish professor Behrouz Sharifi found a letter hidden in the binding with clues that could lead to the hiding place of the manuscripts. Of course there is an evil enemy who is also looking for the manuscripts which he hope will destroy Christian beliefs worldwide and discredit Western governments. He has an understandable hatred for their actions as they destroyed his family. Good, solid basis for an entertaining adventure novel.

The adventures of our intrepid duo take them to the secret archives of the Vatican City to find a hidden document for more clues. These lead to Istanbul and beyond and finally lead to cave dwellings of Cappadoccia in hidden valleys in Turkey, in the usual harum scarum manner of these books. I think most readers of these sorts of novels can see the endings some way off but the enjoyment is in the journey there. Like his other novel Khoury makes this a particularly enjoyable and entertaining, if a little unbelievable, trip. Perfect getting away from it all entertainment if that is what you are in the mood for.

Apart from the unbelievable daredevil actions of Reilly and Tess I enjoyed the book which slipped from 1200 and 1300s to modern day. Raymond Khoury has clearly researched the historical and geographical information he has written in this book and it does give one food for thought about all the manuscripts that are hidden concerning the foundations of the Christian religion. It is this attention to detail that for me takes Khoury a step above the average adventure novelist and makes it easier to put up with the the impossible action sequences as an occasional diversion from the deeper stuff.
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on 6 October 2011
When I pick up a book of the 'ancient mystery = modern murders' genre, I don't expect a lot apart from something to keep me entertained for a few hours on a train.

As this book went on, I went from mildly entertained to increasingly irritated. It seems that both sides would have got what they wanted if they'd just stopped killing each other and pooled some funding and academic knowledge.

The editing left something to be desired too, as there was one particular phrase the author uses several dozen times throughout the book, where it got to the point that I couldn't read it without cringing- when you're trying to skim read another silly action paragraph, it's very jarring to find that one annoying phrase in the middle.

All in all, the book is generally what you expect from this genre but slightly more annoying than usual.
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Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I rarely give up after the first few pages of a book and although I felt like it with this one, I ploughed on for over a hundred pages before determining that I was completely lost and gave it up as a bad job. It is not that it is badly written, I just could not really follow the plot and that may in fairness be due to the fact that I am one of millions who reads a book for half an hour each evening before going to sleep or if the story is compelling a bit or quite a lot longer. With this book, I opened it each evening and did persevere, but ultimately it had to be consigned to under the bed and there it is likely to stay for a while I feel, until my wife takes it to a charity shop, where I hope that someone will get the pleasure from this book that Raymond Khoury intended, but was not received by me.
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on 27 August 2013
It maybe that I have read far too many of these religious thrillers but this one just didn't do it for me. The story itself is not bad and I found the flash back part of the story to be the most interesting. However Tess came across as selfish and demanding. Considering she is supposed to have a child at home that fact didn't have an impact when she was going after what she wanted. I found Sean to be a bit weak and gave in to Tess far too easily. The bad guy was too extreme for my taste and it wasn't 100% clear whether he was out for revenge for himself or if someone else was pulling the strings. Finally you were left to wonder what was contained in these books that had been hidden for so long because the author didn't reveal it.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 7 February 2011
Format: HardcoverVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I have read a lot about the Templers, both fiction and history books. I was looking forward to this book and hoping for a tense thriller with lots of twists and action. In many ways it did deliver. There certainly was lots of action, and at times the writing was griping. The trouble is that the good bits just weren't there enough, and the characters simply were simply to boring for me to keep coming back to this book; it took me a long time to finish. It is by no means a dreadful book, but I can't honestly recomend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 22 June 2015
Loved this book, read his previous book in paperback around the pool on holiday and got hooked by the two main modern characters and their search for the truth about The Templars and the Crusades.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 12 June 2014
An excellent adventure story, following on from 'The Last Templar' which I too enjoyed. Exciting, engaging and it holds your attention right the way through the 500 pages thanks to its fast pace.
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