Given recent events in Paris, and other locations throughout the world, this review is going to be more personal than my reviews generally are.
In 930 CE, a revered group of scholars pen the first sanctioned Bible, planting the seed from which other major religions will grow. But in 1953, half the manuscript goes missing while being transported from Syria. Around the same time, in the foothills of the Dead Sea, an ancient scroll is discovered—and promptly stolen. Six decades later, both parchments stand at the heart of a geopolitical battle between foreign governments and radical extremists, threatening the lives of millions. With the American homeland under siege, the president turns to a team of uniquely trained covert operatives including FBI profiler Karen Vail, Special Forces veteran Hector DeSantos, and FBI terrorism expert Aaron Uziel. Their mission: Find the stolen documents and capture—or kill—those responsible for unleashing a coordinated and unprecedented attack on US soil.
Length: 428 Pages
Publisher: Open Road Media Mystery and Thriller
Release Date: November 3, 2015
About the Author
Alan Jacobson is the national bestselling author of several critically acclaimed novels. In order to take readers behind the scenes to places they might never go, Jacobson has embedded himself in many federal agencies, including spending several years working with two senior profilers at the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s vaunted Behavioral Analysis Unit in Quantico. During that time, Jacobson edited four published FBI research papers on serial offenders, attended numerous FBI training courses, worked with the head firearms instructor at the academy, and received ongoing personalized instruction on serial killers—which continues to this day. He has also worked with high-ranking members of the Drug Enforcement Administration, the US Marshals Service, the New York Police Department, SWAT teams, local bomb squads, branches of the US military, chief superintendents and detective sergeants at Scotland Yard, criminals, armorers, helicopter pilots, chief executive officers, historians, and Special Forces operators. These experiences have helped him to create gripping, realistic stories and characters. His series protagonist, FBI profiler Karen Vail, resonates with both female and male readers, and writers such as Nelson DeMille, James Patterson, and Michael Connelly have called Vail one of the most compelling heroes in suspense fiction.
Jacobson’s books have been published internationally, and several have been optioned for film and television. A number have been named to Best of the Year lists.
Jacobson has been interviewed extensively on television and radio, including on CNN, NPR, and multiple ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox network affiliates.
When I first started reading The Lost Codex, it made me uncomfortable. As you can tell from Alan Jacobson’s author bio, he knows how to make a story realistic, and believable. That is very important in thrillers, and books in general. But he was describing Islamic extremists planting sleeper cells and suicide bombers throughout the United States. He referred to events such as 9/11 and other events that have actually occurred. It was TOO realistic, and I didn’t like it. It seemed to me he was playing on people’s fears.
But the characters were compelling, the action was addicting, so I kept reading.
When I was about 3/4 of the way through the book, Agent Vail and her team had made their way through London and then to Paris, tracking down the terrorists.
And guess when I was reading this section. Yup. The day the terrorists attacked Paris.
I was FREAKING out. This wasn’t fiction anymore. This was happening.
But instead of throwing the book aside, I continued reading. And I the recent events helped me see everything in a whole new light. It was about courage, faith in humanity, and compassion. It was a remarkable story about people who were faced with uncertainty every day, but still fought for what was right. Whether it was the law enforcement officers or the innocent civilians who lived in the Middle East…this was a story about putting aside differences and fighting for a greater cause.
The added element of the missing manuscript and scroll added a really interesting spin to the terrorist situation and helped give the book balance. Instead of being uncomfortable, I now couldn’t get enough.
The only thing I wish would have been different is the extensive explanations of political situations. These explanations sometimes lasted an entire chapter, and it felt like I was reading a text book at times. I understand it is a complex situation that the reader needs to understand, but I wonder if it could have been done in a different way.
Overall, I give The Lost Codex 5 out of 5 stars
Content: (0 being none and 5 being A LOT)
There is swearing littered throughout the book, including the F-word.
Although this book had the potential for being very violent, given the nature of the topic, the violence was not generally graphic/gruesome and I felt it was handled well.
There are a handful of sexual innuendos, but nothing over the top.
The Lost Codex is available digitally and in paperback. You can purchase it by clicking on the image below. Happy Reading!