Mystery novel exceeds expectations
When I read author Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code a year or two ago, I didn’t think there were other books in the same genre that could match up to Brown’s incredible storytelling. And while I don’t think author Charles Brokaw is nearly as talented at the craft as Brown, his debut novel, The Atlantis Code, is about as close as an author can get. When I first bought the book, I was wondering if it might turn into a rip-off of Brown’s publications. It didn’t take long for Brokaw to lay that worry to rest.
The book follows Harvard linguist and archaeologist Thomas Lourds (similar to Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon from Brown’s novels), who has become involved with the discovery of an artifact covered with an indecipherable language. Soon after, a Russian archaeologist and friend of Lourds is killed due to her possession of a similar artifact. This leads Lourds into a quest for knowledge and discovery, following the mysterious trails of the artifacts while racing against killers hired by a secret Catholic society who want to use the artifacts to expose one of the Church’s most ancient secrets: the true history of the Garden of Eden.
There is no doubt that Brokaw did his research when laying down the foundation for this novel. The Atlantis Code is filled with historical information, adding to Lourds’ talents as a linguist. The vast amount of information supplied by the story does a superb job of bringing Lourds to life as a character, making him appear as a real professional in his job as well as adding an astounding level of mystery and intrigue to the plot.
The story’s adventurous plot packed full of action also kept me hooked all the way through, although not as much as the historical mystery did. Nevertheless, Brokaw succeeded in keeping the excitement fresh throughout the story instead of allowing it to become dry, dull and repetitive. Along his journey, Lourds is joined by the murdered archaeologist’s sister, who happens to be a police officer out for vengeance against killer’s who almost enjoy taking another human’s life. Brokaw successfully twisted these basic ideas into a well-woven plot that remained as unpredictable as the novel’s surprising climax.
The Atlantis Code is currently followed by two sequels: The Lucifer Code and The Temple Mount Code. Due to the excellence of the first book, I cannot wait to read either of them.