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The Jericho Deception: A Novel

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  253 ratings  ·  38 reviews
A heart-stopping thriller into the nexus between spirituality, neuropsychology, and international politics.

What if you controlled the power to see God?

Yale neuroscientist Dr. Ethan Lightman is on the verge of a ground-breaking discovery. A discovery that will solve a mystery that has haunted him since childhood. A discovery that will alter humanity’s relationship with reli
Paperback, 432 pages
Published April 30th 2013 by West Hills Press (first published January 1st 2013)
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Benjamin Thomas
I read quite a few "thriller" novels, including all of the sub-genres that might come under that heading and many times find myself just sort of plodding along, waiting for them to be over so I can move on to the next book on my TBR list. I still enjoy them, don't get me wrong, but they don't leave me going "Wow" at the end either. This one was quite enjoyable and even flirts with a "5" rating from me.

It's a "scientific" thriller, along the lines of something you might read from James Rollins or
I strongly recommend The Jericho Deception to anyone who is interested in reading contemporary fiction that challenges your thinking about theology and science. Full disclosure, Jeff is also a close friend so with that potential bias out of the way, I can freely state that if you enjoy the combination of science and action that provides the basic conflict in the late Michael Crichton's books or the combination of action packed plots and the exploration of religion and spirituality that Dan Brown ...more
Faye Powell
After loving The Breath of God by Jeffrey Small, I had high expectations for The Jericho Deception. Somehow, though, it did not engage me as much as I had hoped. The premise that the God experience could be evoked through a machine that sends electrical impulses to the brain and that the CIA could appropriate the technology for its own sinister means was intriguing, but the two main characters, Ethan and Rachel, weren't sufficiently developed enough for me to care deeply about them. Anyway, it s ...more
Jeffrey Small's novel is the type of thriller that has a terrific premise and keeps me turning the pages until the end.

What if there is a machine that can make one see visions of God. Whatever God the person subscribes to.

Dr. Ethan Lightman is on the verge of his biggest discovery, one that has haunted him since an epileptic event in childhood. His life work, the Logos machine, should be able to produce a religious ecstasy.

Then his mentor is murdered, his work perverted, and Ethan finds himself
Ethan Lightman, a research scientist at Yale is working on a project...a machine called ' Logos ' with his mentor, Elijah Schiff,that he hopes will resolve a mystery that has haunted him his entire life. He hopes to unlock secrets of the human brain. There may be hidden images existing there...that might connect Man to God, but time and money are running out. Some people are able to see images that no one else can see. Are these people crazy or are their functions or insights of the human brain ...more
This is such a good book. Intelligent subject matter coupled with believable, likeable characters and a story-line that will have you stymied all the way through to the end.

Yale neuroscientist Dr. Ethan Lightman has made a ‘God Machine’ that uses electrical stimuli to create spiritual ecstasy in human test subjects. When Lightman’s colleague and friend is murdered it is discovered that the Logos (God Machine) is being replicated by a top secret CIA program to establish a world-wide belief system
The beginning of this review is very rant-y and slams the author pretty hard, but read all the way through because I DID finish the book for a few reasons-- Jeffrey Small, if you're reading this, I DO eventually have some nice things to say :)

I was surprised to read that this author has attended Yale, Harvard and Oxford because, in my opinion, he is a horrible writer:
1) The variety in vocabulary choice was incredibly poor. Voices were described as "baritone" on more than 3 occasions, and not in
Jeffrey Small’s THE JERICHO DECEPTION mixes science, politics, and religion in a Dan Brown-style psychological thriller that is as philosophically challenging as it is formulaic. Yale scientist Dr. Ethan Lightman has developed a machine he calls “the Logos” that has the potential to stimulate spiritual ecstasy in the human mind. Ethan’s theory is that our perception of God has been “created by electrical impulses firing in the temporal lobes of the brain” (as happens during epileptic seizures). ...more
A suspenseful and captivating thriller. Dr. Ethan Lightman, a Yale neuroscientist, is working on a big project, a machine that allows people to experience religious ecstasy. When Ethan's mentor and friend is murdered, things begin to spiral out of control. Ethan and Rachel Riley are thrown into a top secret program developed by the CIA. This project centers around Ethan's machine, the Logos, but it is used in a distorted way, to brainwash people. Can Ethan stop this program before it throws the ...more
It took a while for the pace to pick up, but I enjoyed the book overall. The highlights for me were the exchanges on science and religions, especially ones from the Sister Terri and Elijah. On the downside, the thriller/mystery aspect was weak with the plot progressing along expected direction, and the only mystery was, who's going to make it? (view spoiler) The characters could be less stereotypical,(view spoiler) ...more
What a thrill ride from page one to the very last page. This was a very entertaining and tense read. I enjoyed reading about this kind of imaginative possibility. I also appreciate Jeffry Small's tie in of religious questions from several world religions.
My first Jeffrey Small book, and it was not bad. I was meandering through it for whatever reason. I actually enjoyed the book, but it just took me a while to get through it.

However, I am interested in reading his first book, The Breath of God.
The CIA. Christianity. Islam. A machine that can allow one to experience 'god.' Epilepsy. Yale. Egypt. These components all worked together and created an engaging read of what might result with good science in the wrong hands.
This was a pretty good book. I found myself wanting to get to it when I would quit for the day. enjoyable read but not sure about the slant on the CIA.
Gregg Runburg
An interesting concept wrapped in an off-the-shelf plot. You won't be able to put it down, but you'll feel cheap once it's over.
Robert Franzoi
It was a pretty good book. A little monotonous in parts but it was a decent story idea and reasonably well-executed. I just kept hoping for something unexpected...alas, no.
This was a captivating thriller that was both interesting and thought provoking. The interwoven stories of science, religion, politics and just plain old human nature makes you look at the world around you and think could this really happen. The characters were very human and most of them very likable, there always have to be a few bad guys in a thriller. The author has written a story that will have people thinking and talking. So glad I got this book from Goodreads First Reads giveaway, it was ...more
Jeffrey Small takes an intriguing idea, that stimulation of a certain area of the brain produces mystical sensations, and provides a thrilling read. From an Ivy League research lab to a CIA black op in the Middle East; from a sad, boring, research professor to Indiana Jones; this fast-paced story raises thought-provoking questions regarding the basis of religious thought, morality limits in fighting terrorism, and fundamentally how one handles and manages research on brain control.

I received a
Drew Allen
The book describes what would happen if someone invented a machine that invoked a mystical experience in a person and how such a machine could be misused.

As with Small's first book, The Breath of God: A Novel of Suspense, this book discusses the interrelations of the world's religions. Small seems to have hit his stride with this book. While the first book seemed forced at points, this book seemed much more realistic.
fairly entertaining but the romance got very redundant and cliche.
Stephanie Dollinger
A real page turner. If you like Dan Brown, you will really like this.
Greg Tymn
I enjoyed the novel. As a $2.99 Kindle book, it would have been great. At $10, not so much.

Overall, it had the flavor of Crichton and perhaps Lee Child. A pretty good potboiler with a good protagonist this time. The CIA characters were overworked and less believable....perhaps a case of "writing what you don't know".

Still, if you have a snowy weekend with little to do, it's a good book to sit down with for an evening or two next to the fireplace.

Too pricey though.
Laurie Hanan
I loved the author’s first book and, if anything, I loved this one more. Medical science has suggested there is a “God spot” in our brain that compels humans to seek out religion. The author has cleverly taken this concept and turned it into a medical, religious, CIA, international thriller. The main characters were believable and sympathetic, the villain larger than life. I was riveted to my Kindle until I came to the end of the story. I look forward to more by this author.
Feb 25, 2014 Melody rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Melody by: Southern Voices 2014
Hard to follow plot. First you are in Dubai then you are in the US. I've read plenty of other books that switch back and forth - but something about this one makes it more difficult to follow. Everything finally comes together - but it was too late for me.

I heard the author speak at Southern Voices, an author's conference at the Hoover Library. I liked that he got the idea from an article in Wired Magazine about a man who had invented "The God Helmut".
I enjoyed this book a lot. Maybe because it has a Connecticut connection and I'm from Connecticut, or maybe because it deprived me of sleep and a few missed meals from its insistence to keep reading, or maybe because the characters were memorable, the story had many twists and turns, and situations that were highly plausible. Whatever the reason(s), I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I want to read more of this author.
While this book tackles huge questions of science and spirituality with a dose of distrustful governmental interventions--all of which were handled quite plausibly--at times I felt the human interactions forced and the broad topics over-simplified. This novel was a decent read, but I only finished it so I could get to my next book.
Veronica Dedow
I won this book through first reads giveaways. Wow!! Is all I have to say. As the summary says, is the perfect blend of religion, neuropsychology and politics. It appealed to me in all three ways and more! It was such a fun read and very Dan Brown-esque. Conspiracy theories are the best reads. :) Great job, Jeffrey Small!
Absolutely fantastic book! Has to do with the role the brain plays in the belief in God or higher power. And a machine that can induce religious ecstasy. Thereby having the ability to control people and groups. Government evilness, terrorism,...a great thriller. Highly recommend.
This was a really good book. I hated having to put it down when other things came up during the course of my day. There is alot of "food for thought" regarding religion, beliefs and how they play into a person's life. I highly recommend this book.
Another awesome thriller with intellectual rigor baked in throughout. I enjoyed The Breath of God a little more than this one but it contains the same level of international and spiritual intrigue. Definitely worth the time to read it.
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A graduate of Yale, Harvard, and Oxford Universities, Jeffrey Small has studied Yoga in India, practiced meditation in Bhutan, and journeyed throughout the Holy Land. His critically acclaimed debut novel THE BREATH OF GOD won the 2012 Nautilus Book Award Gold Medal for best fiction and was hailed as "visionary fiction" by Library Journal and "a thought-provoking masterpiece" by RT Book Reviews. Hi ...more
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The Breath of God: A Novel of Suspense Jericho Deception, The: A Novel

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“You’ll never find peace if you play the what-if game. There will always be more ifs.” 0 likes
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