Nazi war secrets, Cold War politics, modern space technology and science fiction come together in Thomas and Thurkettle’s debut historical thriller.
American Alex Pyke was adopted from Germany as an infant, and he’s living the American dream as an adult: He has a successful business, a new home in an exclusive neighborhood and plenty of romantic companionship. When a business trip takes him back to the country of his birth, he meets a mysterious scientist and his beautiful, charismatic niece for what should be a quick transaction. However, they soon entice him into an increasingly dangerous situation, in which he begins to uncover secrets about his biological parents’ history during World War II as well as his own childhood. He eventually finds out that the Nazis were using psychics and scientists to develop an unbeatable superweapon, but they were unable to complete it before the Allies gained ground against them. However, the research continued during the Cold War era. It soon becomes clear that Alex and his ancestors are inextricably tied to a treacherous network of scientists, spies, assassins and rebels. The novel kicks into high gear at the very start, with a curious, creepy prologue that takes place in President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Oval Office; the rest of the story takes place primarily in 1999, with frequent flashbacks to the 1940s and ’60s. The various timelines’ twists and turns introduce many new characters and offer clues to the primary mystery. As the action builds toward the book’s climax, the puzzle pieces click satisfyingly and unpredictably into place. The authors skillfully manage the multiple time frames and large cast and never leave any plot threads dangling. The book’s science-fiction element drives the major plot twists, but the most engaging scenes are those in which readers learn the real relationships and histories between the characters.
A complex thriller that offers new revelations up until the very end.