Opening with Napoleon on Egypt's Giza Plateau in 1799 Steve Barry again takes us on an exciting, suspenseful, ever surprising journey with former justice department operative Cotton Malone. One of the many things that makes reading a Berry book so intriguing is his splendid mix of history and mystery.
As we know Napoleon was, among other things, an excellent thief. He had stolen vast treasures from repositories of wealth throughout the world. Question is what became of this booty after his death? Was it hidden somewhere, could it be found?
Malone's night is rudely interrupted by a break-in to his Copenhagen bookshop. An American Secret Service agent, Sam Collins, comes knocking with gun in hand and assassins in his wake. He's there to tell Cotton that his good friend, Henrik Thorvaldsen, needs him. Escaping the gunmen Cotton and Sam head for Henrik's estate.
Seems that Henrik is onto a plot devised by the Paris Club, a group of the world's wealthiest who are bent on manipulating global economy. Cotton and Henrik have been the best of friends and in many a tight spot, but this time it seems even Cotton may not be able to hold terrorists at bay, find Napoleon's lost treasure, and prevent an attack that could change the world forever.
To compound matters, as if they weren't compounded enough, Cotton discovers that Henrik's motives aren't entirely altruistic - he wants revenge for the death of his son who was murdered by the top dog in this cabal of multi-millionaires.
Once more, Berry's love of history and knack for crafting a suspenseful tale come to the fore with THE PARIS VENDETTA. It'S Berry at his best, and that's saying something.
If you prefer an audio edition, Scott Brick does his usual first rate job of bringing a story to life. He's an aces narrator! Available from Random House Audio Books.
- Gail Cooke