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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trinity Game - a wild and thrilling read!
Trinity Game is fast-paced, engrossing and really original page-turner. From a crazy premise (vatican detective investigating his crooked TV evangelist uncle) the book takes you on a wild ride to a thrilling finale. I suspect it's a bit of a marmite book - you either love or hate this sort of thing. Personally I loved it and couldn't put it down. Way more action and...
Published on 1 Aug. 2012 by Charlie Brown

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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars This One Didn't Hit Me
"The Trinity Game" (which came out on July 31, 2012) is one of the many books written by Sean Chercover and published by Amazon's imprint, Thomas and Mercer. It's a story about a priest, Daniel Byrne, who works for the Vatican investigating reports of alleged miracles. The problem is he has an uncle, Tim Trinity, who's a con artist televangelist making a living off false...
Published on 12 Oct. 2012 by Edward Gordon


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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars This One Didn't Hit Me, 12 Oct. 2012
By 
Edward Gordon "MGWA" (New Orleans, Louisiana, USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Trinity Game (The Game Trilogy Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
"The Trinity Game" (which came out on July 31, 2012) is one of the many books written by Sean Chercover and published by Amazon's imprint, Thomas and Mercer. It's a story about a priest, Daniel Byrne, who works for the Vatican investigating reports of alleged miracles. The problem is he has an uncle, Tim Trinity, who's a con artist televangelist making a living off false miracles.

Actually, Trinity is more than just an uncle, given that he raised Daniel after Daniel's parents died when he was just a baby. But growing up with a grifter left Daniel angry and degraded. So, in an act of rebellion against his televangelist caregiver, does he turn to nipple rings and drugs? No. Instead he becomes a Catholic priest.

As a priest, the now Father Byrne works with the Office of Devil's Advocate. The office of Devil's Advocate (in this novel anyway) exists to expose false claims of miracles and confirm true ones. Daniel has taken up an assignment there with the hopes that one day his investigations will turn up a true miracle. If they do, he hopes he will be able to believe again.

What he doesn't expect is for the true miracle to come through his con artist uncle, forcing him to reconnect with Tim Trinity in order to investigate and expose his miraculous powers of precognition.

But Trinity, as it turns out, is as confused by his newfound powers as Daniel is. During services, Trinity goes into a trance and speaks in tongues, but when a recording of the tongues is played backward at one-third speed, it comes out as deadly accurate predictions told in perfect English.

This miraculous clairvoyance leads people to the Reverend Trinity in droves. He predicts the winning lottery numbers and tells everyone what those numbers are; he predicts horse races, and disasters, and the weather.

There seems to be no stopping his fame and inevitable power in light of his enlightenment, so the powers-that-be determine Trinity is too dangerous to live. They figure if he keeps telling people what will happen, it will destroy the power structures and moneymaking systems of the world. Thus the Vatican, as well as the mob (interesting bedfellows indeed), set out to assassinate him.

The book is interesting to read, but it's got some problems. In one part there's a secret intelligence agency run by young priests who are computer hackers and are able to bring up any personal information that is needed or requested. That addition to the story comes across as hokey and a merely convenient device for getting needed information into the story to make the plot work out.

Then there's this seemingly omnipotent world organization that makes a cameo appearance to help Daniel. Its sole purpose is to see that "good" prevails in the world. Again, this seems like a ridiculous insert into a story that can't stand up without it. Not to mention, Trinity, himself, is portrayed as a bumbling almost stupid character that converts to the true religion of love and good works, way too easily.

And of course there's a sexy female news reporter covering the whole thing against her bosses wishes (If it matters, her name is Julia.). A bit too ironically, Daniel broke up with Julia to join the priesthood and now has a hard time (and I use the term deliberately) maintaining his oath of celibacy whenever he comes in contact with her.

Apparently, the young celibate priest must struggle against his erections or the story just isn't sexy enough for modern audiences. And in this service, Chercover never fails to mention Daniel's inter-trouser tensions during his interludes with Julia. It becomes embarrassing to read.

Would I recommend this book? No. However "The Trinity Game" is interesting and suspenseful in parts, and the power plays and politics between priests and bishops is exciting to experience. The chapters are short, the pacing is fast, and Chercover is an experienced veteran within the action thriller genre. Not to mention, it's available in all formats and if you're an e-book reader reader, you'll find the Kindle pricing refreshing at less than five dollars. If you like religi-politico thrillers, and you have a strong ability to suspend your disbelief, you'll enjoy "The Trinity Game."
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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Trinity Game - a wild and thrilling read!, 1 Aug. 2012
This review is from: The Trinity Game (The Game Trilogy Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Trinity Game is fast-paced, engrossing and really original page-turner. From a crazy premise (vatican detective investigating his crooked TV evangelist uncle) the book takes you on a wild ride to a thrilling finale. I suspect it's a bit of a marmite book - you either love or hate this sort of thing. Personally I loved it and couldn't put it down. Way more action and intrigue than a dan brown - 5 stars.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Far Fetched but Interesting, 30 Nov. 2012
By 
Brett H "pentangle" (Brighton) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Daniel Byrne works for the Vatican as an investigator for the Office of Devil's Advocate. His job is to investigate the validity of apparent miracles and his record to date is that he has investigated 721 cases and found each and every one of them to be false. His next case involves a TV preacher and con man, Tim Trinity, who has, apparently, started to speak in tongues. These can easily be converted into English and prove to be remarkably accurate prophecies. The complication is that the preacher is his uncle who brought him up until the age of 13 when he ran away from home.

Much to Daniel's surprise, his uncle is not necessarily the fake he initially assumes. Much of the book concerns the reaction of the populace in general to this new prophet amongst us. Not everyone is pleased. The Vatican clearly sees it as threatening their business model. Various underworld characters consider that Trinity's prophecies will cost them money. Government organisations, whilst wanting to be seen to protect free speech, also feel threatened. Various other shady organisations with their own agendas also get involved.

Daniel himself is an interesting character. Clearly his motive for working for the Vatican is that he is secretly hoping that he will come across a genuine miracle which will affirm his rather shaky faith. However, his view of faith and the proof he initially seeks change as the story goes on. Trinity himself makes a 180 degree turn from one with no faith at all to a believer who accepts everything which happens as God's will.

Initially interesting, this story turns into a chase around the southern states of America, with both Tim and Daniel in considerable danger which is quite tense and, at times, fast moving. Others have said that the coincidence of the relationship between Tim and Daniel stretches credibility and that is certainly fair comment. However, it is worth suspending disbelief as this a quite a good story both in terms of the general reaction to an apparent new messiah and the developing story as they try to keep ahead of those who wish them harm. Overall a worthwhile read which I enjoyed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Terrifically engaging thriller, 13 Aug. 2012
By 
marcoscu "marcoscu" (Chorley,UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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I rarely read mysteries or crime novels - I'm not really a fan. I picked up The Trinity Game because I enjoy most things that have a hint of the paranormal, and was glad I did, it was a truly terrific read, a fast moving thriller with an intriguing premise, a crime thriller with a supernatural twist that hooks you and doesn't let go. My only complaint is that my favourite character, the best character, doesn't make it to the end. Such a waste, but a demise that was always on the cards.

It's hard to say much more without spoiling the plot. The Trinity Game is not especially unique or original - Religious investigators, supposed miracles, Vatican shenanigans and double dealings have been fashionable since the Da Vinci Code - but Sean Chercover twists the usual premise and sets it amongst the show-preachers of the American South, adding great atmosphere, and he's a much better writer than Dan Brown.

It's not great literature but it's not meant to be, it's a hell of a page-turner, with enough twists to keep you guessing. Thoroughly enjoyable nonsense which I highly recommend. I look forward to the sequel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Holy cow, this is good., 18 July 2013
By 
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This review is from: The Trinity Game (The Game Trilogy Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
`The Trinity Game' is a slick read that had me gripped from close to the opening. To begin, there is an assassination attempt and from there, we skip back a short while to find out how about the events that led up to this moment.

Daniel Byrne is a priest who works for an agency of the Catholic church. Essentially, he's the man who is sent for to investigate and expose fraudulent claims of miracles. His boss gives him the challenge of investigating his own uncle, a phoney con man of a preacher who brought Daniel up as if he were his own son.

Daniel relishes the possibility of bringing down the uncle who exposed him to so much that wasn't true. The thing is, that whilst Tim Trinity (the aforementioned uncle) is speaking in tongues, he's actually making predictions that come true - record his sermons and play his `speaking in tongues' backwards and the messages can be clearly understood. Daniel is surprised by this as it runs counter to the information he's been provided.

Trinity's predictions come in all shapes and sizes. He offers race winners, football scores, on the one hand and warnings of dangerous explosions on the other.

I've never considered the consequences of what might happen if someone could see into the future, but Sean Chercover clearly has. The mob aren't happy because of the implications for the gambling industry. The church isn't happy because their own god cult will be undermined. The government can't settle because of the possible exposure of their motivations to maintain the status quo. The economic drives of society might be seriously challenged were god to offer insights and messages on morality. In short, there are a lot of agencies who might want to silence Tim Trinity using any means at their disposal.

Chercover has created outstandingly well crafted characters for this story, fully formed people with interesting histories that are interesting in themselves. He's also found big enough scope to allow a reader to focus upon a number of issues - the lengths the swine of the press will go to uncover a pearl; elected governments and their uneasy relationship with freedom of speech; the ambiguities of national security; institutional racism' sexism; and general hypocrisy. This is gently done and only adds to the complexities and pleasure that can be derived from the story. There is plenty to provoke thought, but my eyes were always focussed on what might happen next and the eventual outcome.

I was completely wrapped up in the book and bought the entire premise. It's a tremendous creation that offers far more than your average page-turner.

As I sprinted to the end, I thing I'd been so taken in that I'd begun to expect there'd be a revelation of some kind that might be life-changing. Maybe there'd be a customised messaged that would help me find a path to follow. Of course, the author couldn't provide that and, instead, he stuck to his job by tying up all the loose ends in the story and making sure the whole thing is bullet proof.

I really enjoyed it and urge you to give it your attention.
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79 of 91 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Trinity Game - new balls, please, 20 July 2012
By 
Gs-trentham - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
As a reader I am irritated by sweepingly dismissive reviews; they need some justification. As a grateful recipient of Amazon Vine products, I feel a responsibility to provide a considered review of any book. The Trinity Game, I am sorry to say, has tested me to the limit.

I also have a problem in not wishing to reveal an important plot element. In this case, I will restrict myself to saying that the matter of Speaking in Tongues is investigated - and exposed - with a technique I find simply unbelievable. As is the actual achievement in the first place. So, too, the coincidental relationship between the investigator and the evangelist "who just happens to be his estranged uncle."

The Trinity Game seems like an attempt to ride the wave of popularity for The Da Vinci Code. I didn't like that, either, but clearly many did. This is just one reader's record of disappointment.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Holy Rollers and Mystical Debunkers, 27 Dec. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Trinity Game (The Game Trilogy Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
It was cheap and I was tempted. I didn't expect much and was pleasantly surprised; I did enjoy this novel. The plot is a bit predictable, although I was wrong a number of times. The descriptions of life after Katrina and the ongoing rebuild of New Orleans was very good. I liked the troubled Danny and Tim, the preacher. This seemed like an introduction to a series of thrillers to me; easy reading for a lazy sunday afternoon or on holiday.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slightly baffling, 29 Aug. 2012
By 
R. A. Mansfield "bertieronbob" (Brighton) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This is essentially a book about the power of faith over scepticism.

Daniel Byrne is basically an investigator for the Vatican who debunks claims of miracles. When a TV evangelist - Tim Trinity - starts predicting the future, Daniel is sent to investigate.

It just so happens that Trinity is Daniel's estranged uncle and is known to be a conman, but somehow Daniel ends up on the run trying to save Trinity's life.

So much for the plot - this had me baffled for a long while, as there seemed to be a number of over-complicated strands that really didn't need to be there.

The central plot line of Daniel and Trinity is great and hangs together well. Unfortunately, it's crowded out by too much other stuff. There's a fantastic and very intriguing book in here fighting to get out. Think it could have done with a better edit.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 8 Aug. 2012
This review is from: The Trinity Game (The Game Trilogy Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I have seen the low scores on other reviews, but just cannot agree with them. The writing is excellent, and the flaws that others have identified are just not there. A good read - I have been neglecting my friends because of this book!
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Trinity Game, 24 Oct. 2012
By 
Gill (Bangor, NI) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
If, like me, you enjoyed Dan Brown's "The Da Vinci Code" and "Angels and Demons" i.e. gripping reads with crime, cover ups, abuse of power, religious elements, secret organisations, supernatural happenings and a fairly likeable and interesting lead character, then The Trinity Game is a thriller worth reading.

Daniel Byrne is an investigator for the Vatican's Office of the Devils Advocate - a secretive unit which investigates "miracles" and sorts out the true from the fake! So far, in the ODA's history, there have been no verifiable claims. Byrne's latest assignment is one which, on paper, should cause him conflict. He has to investigate the claims of American televangelist Tim Trinity, a Reverend who has started speaking in tongues and is accurately (mostly) predicting the future. The conflict? Reverend Trinity is his estranged Uncle, the man who brought him up and who he knows to be a conman and grifter.

What follows is a fast paced, twisting and turning thriller which invites you to suspend disbelief and sit back and enjoy the action packed adventure. With the Vatican, the FBI, the mob, assassins, a love interest to name but a few, Sean Chercover has thrown everything at this story. Yes, some parts were predictable, some characters confusing and parts of the plot unexplained so I've deducted one star from my rating. However, despite those elements, I was engrossed in, and entertained by, the story right to the very end. It would, in my opinion, make a great movie - in the meantime I look forward to reading more books by this author as The Trinity Game was my introduction to Sean Chercover.
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