A page-turner of the highest order.

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BREAKING GROUND

THE HOREB ANOMALY

In Cornell’s thriller, an unprecedented discovery could invalidate much of what historians believe about humankind’s ancient past.

While on an archeological venture in Jordan, members of a private military firm excavate ancient vessels similar to those housing the Dead Sea Scrolls. The company’s CEO, Victor Finn, enlists the services of expert paleolinguist Holly Webster and former Special Ops soldier Jack Butler to not only unravel the mystery surrounding the indecipherable text inside the vessels, but to travel back to the Middle East to search for more related relics. What the group doesn’t realize, however, is the existence of the Brotherhood, a radical Islamic organization whose mission is to ensure that the accepted historical paradigms of the day are protected and that anything or anyone that challenges those beliefs is promptly destroyed. The discoveries that Webster and Butler make in the field are jaw-dropping—a drastically different history of the Israelites’ Exodus from Egypt, the translation of the original language of ancient man, the first Rosetta Stone, the unearthing of Moses’ tomb, etc. And even these revelations pale in comparison to what they ultimately uncover. But with the Brotherhood bent on destroying them and everything that the remote site has sheltered for millennia, will humankind ever know the literally earth-shattering secrets of their forefathers? The strength of this novel could also be its biggest weakness—although the Indiana Jones-like action and adventure is undeniably gets the adrenaline flowing, it’s also formulaic and, at times, predictable. But even the predictability can’t stifle the sheer audacity of this storyline; it’s apparent that Cornell had as much fun writing this novel as readers will have experiencing it. Powered by a highly intelligent, meticulously researched and provocative narrative that challenges numerous historical and religious convictions regarding humankind’s past, Cornell’s tale is a breakneck-paced, edge-of-your-seat thriller in the vein of Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code.

A page-turner of the highest order.

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-1617394317

Page Count: 356

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: April 15, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2011

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A romantic, sad, and ultimately hopeful book that’s perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes.

GHOSTED

In Walsh’s American debut, a woman desperately tries to find out why the man she spent a whirlwind week with never called.

Sarah has just separated from her American husband and is visiting her hometown in England when she meets Eddie. He’s kind and charming, and although they only spend one week together, she falls in love. When he has to leave for a trip, she knows they’ll keep in touch—they’re already making plans for the rest of their lives. But then Eddie never calls, and Sarah’s increasingly frantic efforts to contact him are fruitless. Is he hurt? Is he dead? As her friends tell her, there’s a far greater likelihood that he’s just blowing her off—she’s been ghosted. After trying to track Eddie down at a football game, Sarah starts to become ashamed of herself—after all, she’s almost 40 years old and she’s essentially stalking a man who never called her. But as Sarah slowly learns, she and Eddie didn’t actually meet randomly—they both have a connection to an accident that happened years ago, and it may have something to do with why he disappeared. The tension quickly amps up as the secrets of Eddie’s and Sarah’s pasts are revealed, and the truth behind their connection is genuinely surprising and heartbreaking. The barriers between Sarah and Eddie seem insurmountable at times, and although their issues are resolved in a tidy manner, the emotions behind their actions are always believable. Walsh has created a deeply moving romance with an intriguing mystery and a touching portrait of grief at its heart.

A romantic, sad, and ultimately hopeful book that’s perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes.

Pub Date: July 24, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-525-52277-5

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Pamela Dorman/Viking

Review Posted Online: May 1, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2018

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An ambitious and bewitching gem of a book with mystery and passion inscribed on every page.

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THE STARLESS SEA

A withdrawn graduate student embarks on an epic quest to restore balance to the world in this long-anticipated follow-up to The Night Circus (2011).

Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a typical millennial introvert; he likes video games, escapist reading, and drinking sidecars. But when he recognizes himself in the pages of a mysterious book from the university library, he's unnerved—and determined to uncover the truth. What begins as a journey for answers turns into something much bigger, and Zachary must decide whether to trust the handsome stranger he meets at a highflying literary fundraiser in New York or to retreat back to his thesis and forget the whole affair. In a high-wire feat of metatextual derring-do, Morgenstern weaves Zachary's adventure into a stunning array of linked fables, myths, and origin stories. There are pirates and weary travelers, painters who can see the future, lovers torn asunder, a menacing Owl King, and safe harbors for all the stories of the world, far below the Earth on the golden shores of a Starless Sea. Clocking in at more than 500 pages, the novel requires patience as Morgenstern puts all the pieces in place, but it is exquisitely pleasurable to watch the gears of this epic fantasy turn once they're set in motion. As in The Night Circus, Morgenstern is at her best when she imagines worlds and rooms and parties in vivid detail, right down to the ballroom stairs "festooned with lanterns and garlands of paper dipped in gold" or a cloak carved from ice with "ships and sailors and sea monsters...lost in the drifting snow." This novel is a love letter to readers as much as an invitation: Come and see how much magic is left in the world. Fans of Neil Gaiman and V.E. Schwab, Kelly Link and Susanna Clarke will want to heed the call.

An ambitious and bewitching gem of a book with mystery and passion inscribed on every page.

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-385-54121-3

Page Count: 512

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: Aug. 4, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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