The Lazarus Vault
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The Lazarus Vault

3.45 of 5 stars 3.45  ·  rating details  ·  518 ratings  ·  55 reviews
Deep in the heart of London, the Monsalvat Bank is small, secretive and fabulously wealthy. When Ellie Stanton, an impoverished graduate student, is unexpectedly invited to join the firm, the privileged world they offer looks too good to turn down.

But the bank is more than it seems. Soon Ellie realises that her life belongs to her employers - and they're watching her every...more
ebook, 480 pages
Published September 30th 2010 by Cornerstone Digital (first published January 1st 2010)
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Rather difficult to say whether I enjoyed the book or not. Whilst I was really hooked onto it, I found the book never really explained the justification for the drive towards the main subject of the book, until at the end, a sort of deviation that this a quest that maybe leads us to this important object of power.
Also, there wasn't so much narrative, apart from the two meetings between Ellie and Harry, to really explain why Ellie would suddenly risk her life to break into the vault. A little mor...more
The Lazarus Vault by Tom Harper, current chair of the CWA (Crime Writer’s Association), is a wonderful adventure spanning eight centuries beginning in early 12th century England.

I have to admit I was captivated by the jacket cover, a vibrant yellow/cream design with a dynamic golden key invoking bountiful treasures held within the pages of Harper’s novel. In an era where book jackets and videos are having a greater impact on book sales, an alluring first impression is vital, certainly for the au...more
This book has two parallel story lines in alternating chapters: one in the current time and one taking place in the 12th century (or whatever century, all the same ancient). I find the ancient story really boring and unnecessary. I did find it difficult to follow, but maybe it's because I wasn't interested in that part of the book in the first place. The current time story is interesting and enjoyable, though I can't say I was hooked to it. I was motivated to finish this book so I could see why...more
Michael MacConnell
I wouldn't pay too much attention to those reviewers who chose to award this book one star - I think perhaps their expectations were rather inflated.

This was a solid effort from Harper, the plot flows neatly for the majority of the book and the dual storyline, though complex, adds a nice sense of history to the story. Clearly, Harper knows his history, especially in regard to Chrétien de Troyes, and the mythology he weaves is solidly grounded.

I only really took issue with the main character, wh...more
I didn't like how the historical time period is written in present tense. I thought it was odd how, just like in "Book of Secrets" by the same author, the historical time period was written in first person while the modern time setting was in third person. But it works and it helps distinguish one setting from another. But I felt like the present tense was overdoing it, I'm not a fan of that at all.

However, I otherwise felt this book was amazingly well written. Many books in this genre are simi...more
If you are a fan of Steve Berry or James Rollins or even Dan Brown this book my look like a good bet. My advise is do not pick it up. Tom Harper fell short in many ways: His "smart" protagonist is so stupid when it comes to men it makes you want to throw up. Many points in his plot line I figured out very on in the book. And his current story just didn't flow well.

Now for the reason the story got two stars instead of one. The author writes a great back story. This is the sort of thing he should...more
Miroslav Houska
I like the blending of historical and present stories, especially for carving contrasts and similarities for ages divided by more than 8 centuries. Contrast is underlined by different narrative form: 1st person for historical story and 3rd person for preset one. At the final part of the book the story is full of improbable events and awkward turnarounds. However, the ends of both stories are nicely done. Some technology mistakes can be found as well - especially ignoring today's technical limita...more
David Schwan
A mostly engaging story yet like eating too much candy not very satisfying. A mysterious bank in London hires the main character Ellie. They offer her a lot of money to come there even though she is basically a humanities scholar. She works on some business deals for the bank and then we get to the mysterious part of the story.

The good guys while part of the story seem to distant and removed from the story to have the impact they should have had. While the ending ties up the story line--overall...more
I just picked this book up randomly at the library, and I'm glad I did. The Lazarus Vault was a solid story and a really fun read. The story follows a grad student who suddenly gets thrown into the world of the extremely rich and powerful and uncovers a secret that could destroy it all. It simultaneously follows the story of a man as he grows up in the twelfth century who also gets drawn into the same secret. This book win the dubious honor of being one of the only books I've liked where I haven...more
This engaging thriller mystery uses two timelines to unravel an 800 year old mystery. The current timeline involves a shady banking concern in London who hires our heroin to conduct it's mergers and acquisitions business. Their real agenda is revealed as the book progresses. The other timeline is in the 1100's. The main character here is a knight who fights for survival in a brutal and savage world dominated by wealthy, powerful, and unscrupulous characters. Lot's of similarities and shared moti...more
I found the book to be enjoyable, with a pace and suspense that made me want to continue reading. Having some familiarity with the Arthurian legends was a big help while reading the book, there are numerous references and parallels. I'd re-read Mallory's "Le Morte D'Arthur" recently, and was glad I had, but I'm sure it's not required to enjoy the book.

The ending took a bit to sink in, but one of the main characters eventually becomes a storyteller/author, and it was worthwhile to note that chara...more
True confession - I bought this audiobook totally by accident. Was meaning to buy another book with "Lazarus" in the name and clicked the wrong button. That said, it's a fun read, a la Da Vinci Code. It alternates the story of an 11th century knight and a modern quest for the Ultimate Object, with all the requisite good guys, bad guys and beautiful, smart, yet imperfect young heroine. Good reader. A plot full of holes and ultimately unresolved issues, yet . . . a very fun diversion along the way...more
I'd really give it 3.5 stars, maybe I should have given it 4. It wasn't quite the page-turner that I love, but it did keep me wanting to find out what happened next. One thing about the book about which I am ambivalent--there are quite a few "unanswered" threads within the plot--I want to know the answers and yet leaving them unanswered adds a bit to the allure of the story, since it is based on a widely held belief and beloved "myth" through the ages up to present day.
I found this a good enough light read, well paced and not completely implausible (although you do have to ignore the lead character making some major choices without very clear or plausible motivation). The historic storyline dragged in the first half; there simply wasn't enough plot to justify the word count. The London setting is well drawn without getting overblown. Don't expect too much and you may well enjoy it.
I am not quite sure. This book started as very exciting, and I get the irony in the end, I just feel it lost something as the chase began. Here I was thinking there was a familiar link between the two stories, but then I dont think there was. Also, I dont know if I read over parts of the stories, but bits seemed to happen without me knowing... Still a good read if you like a bit of Da Vinci style escapism!
Nicolene Smith
I had an extremely vivid flashback of The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown, just with less symbolism. Yes, the Holy Grail will fascinate people until the day they die, but it is not asking too much of authors to be original in their works. This will probably result in me not reading any other books of mr. Harper. Ever.
This book had a really cool premise that never really went anywhere. I loved the dual storylines but it was incredibly anticlimactic when they came together. Nothing was fully explained in the end except to say that there is no explanation and that the mystery continues. I had high hopes at the beginning but by 1/3 of the way in, I had to force myself to finish.
Annette Gisby
Really well written, fast paced and with characters you care about. Part set in the present, part set in the past, each bit complements the other. I loved Ellie, it was so unusual to find a female lead in this time of book, but this is Ellie's story, she's not here as a love interest or anything like that. I want to read more of this author's books.
It was pretty good - Harper's pacing is impecable and he sure knows how to raise the stakes for his characters and keep the reader turning the pages. However, the secret turned out to be the usual thing, so I was disappointed in that, having hoped for something new and different. Even so, a great read, with an interesting twist on a very old idea.
Probably one of the worst books I've read in a long time. Short on plot and credibility, the book leaves the reader wondering what happened between Point A and Point B. It's obvious that the author likes the subject matter and probably knows a great deal about it, but that doesn't stop the book from making little sense at times or flow better
Annie Falconer-Gronow
Another audio book to while away the lonely hours sewing - but what a find! I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's got a female/male lead-very different and refreshing. Slightly questing/action heroine/meeting of past and present. Jolly good fun, not masses of swearing or sex, not overly clever, neither dumbing down. Would recommend as an audio .
Andronicus Kok
The Lazarus Vault by Tom Harper. A powerful bank employs an unknown gal. Little does she know that a sinister plan has been hatched since her arrival. The gal goes through her work but gets caught up in their scheme. She discovers an ancient secret and suddenly her life's on the run where secret dark people want to silence her.
Mavrommatis Nikolas
The sights and sounds of 12th century England and Wales come to life in Harper’s magical prose effortlessly relaying the stark contrast between 12th century poverty and present day affluence.

Atmospheric and imaginative, The Lazarus Vault will tease and tantalise and take you on a charismatic journey across the globe.
I found the book kept me interested and although at times I did feel like giving up on it I persevered. The plot was good but often went on tangents and I found myself retreading sections as the book has two stories running alongside each other and the chapters flick between them. I was a bit disappointed with the ending.
Excellent book, well written, kept me turning the page and the past and the preent were nicely intermingled. Liked the fact that the writer had done his research on Chretien de Troyes and the action moced from Wales, London, France and Luxembourg so kept the reader's interest. Will now read some more of Tpm Harper's work.
Caroline House
I enjoyed this book until I got to the end, which I found disappointing. I liked how the book tells two stories interwoven, one set in modern day and one in medieval times, both moving towards the same outcome. However it was that outcome which I found let the book down somewhat, thus only giving it 4/5 stars.
Kolleen Oxbury
This one did not keep me interested. I liked Peters stirrings but Ellie felt flat and the choices she made didn't make sense. There was so much switching between them I started to loose interest. Felt like a poor mans DaVinci Code. I don't post many bad reviews so when I do, I really mean it ;)


I had some trouble staying with this book. The alternating story line I did not like very much. I liked the present day story but found myself skimming the storyline from the past. It did not hold my interest. The connection between the 2 stories made sense but it seemed unnecessary.
Hari Kumar
Very cleverly written . I especially liked the concept of using two parallel story lines - medieval and current . People in the 21st century hunting for an ancient secret - its cool . The characters really stand out . It was a satisfying read .
Stephen Williams
This was so much better then that over grail tail. More interesting, better told.
I totally enjoyed this book in some place I found that I could see through the plot. Then good books can be like that, and it never gave the ending away.
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Tom Harper was born in West Germany in 1977 and grew up in Germany, Belgium and America; he now lives in England. He is chair of the Crime Writers' Association and also a member of the Historical Novels Society and the Society of Authors.

Tom Harper also writes historical adventures as Edwin Thomas.

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thre...more
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