THE GAUDI KEY by Esteban Martin


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The latest addition to the Oh-No-We-Got-Christianity-All-Wrong thriller genre, from a pair of Barcelona natives.

This time the artist whose works hold the key to the hijacking of Western religious civilization is the Catalan architectural genius Antonio Gaudí, whose psychedelic Art Nouveau buildings are part of the fabric and glory of Barcelona. Doctoral candidate María Givell and her dashing, brilliant boyfriend Miguel, a mathematician and swordsman, are sent on the hunt for the solution of Gaudí’s symbolic message to the Catholic world by María’s grandfather Juan. Juan, succumbing to the horrors of Alzheimer’s disease, is living his last days in a nursing home where the dutiful María visits him as often as she can. Before the darkness closes over him completely, Juan tells her the fantastic story of his childhood relationship with the architect and of their involvement with the mysterious Knights of Moriah, who guard a fabulous relic from the pre-Christian past. Before he was shoved into the path of a Barcelona streetcar, Gaudí steeped the lad in the mysteries of the knighthood and of his works, and Juan needs desperately to pass those mysteries on to María, who is destined to take up the cause. Doing so will place the lass in mortal peril. The Knights of Moriah have enemies in Barcelona, a small army of hereditary villains whose mission is to foil the Knights in their quest to correct the historic and very basic errors of Christianity. María and Miguel can scarcely believe the old man, but a flurry of bullets from bad guys who look strangely like carvings on the Sagrada Familia cathedral and the subsequent murder of the grandfather convince them to start solving the string of riddles that hold the solution to Juan’s mystery. Their allies are a spunky Japanese art scholar whose mobster boyfriend has ties to the dark side, and Cristobal, a giant cabdriver with ties to his saintly eponym.

Humorless and breathless yet long-winded thriller, drowning in symbology.

Pub Date: Aug. 5th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-06-143491-4
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Morrow/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2008


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