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Pentecost

(ARKANE #1)

by
3.70  ·  Rating details ·  2,177 ratings  ·  371 reviews
There are alternate cover editions for this ASIN here and here.

A power kept secret for 2000 years. A woman who stands to lose everything.

India. When a nun is burned alive on the sacred ghats of Varanasi, and the stone she carried is stolen, an international hunt is triggered for the relics of the early church.

Forged in the fire and blood of martyrs, the Pentecost stones ha
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Kindle Edition, 292 pages
Published January 16th 2011 by The Creative Penn (first published January 5th 2011)
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3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,177 ratings  ·  371 reviews


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Graham Downs
Dec 23, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
Having developed a great respect for the author through her Twitter and YouTube accounts, I've been meaning to read this book for quite some time.

I have to say it's not really what I expected. I rather expected the title to be more metaphorical, that it would be a thriller with only passing hints (at best) at Christianity. What I got was something deeply entrenched in Christian history and tradition (and some extra bits made up and thrown in). Don't get me wrong, that's not a bad thing!

Aspects o
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John
During the first Pentecost, each of the disciples were given a stone, which they carried to the ends of the known world imbued with supernatural power of healing and persuasion through the passage of a comet which appeared during Jesus's resurrection. Two groups are interested in gathering the twelve stones together for each group's nefarious purposes before the next Pentecost since the same comet will be above the Earth at that time. Holders of the stones are being killed for the stones they ar ...more
Lindsey
Jan 09, 2016 rated it it was ok
The 12 Pentecost stones have been hidden for 2,000 years, but don't worry, our heroes find them all in a couple of days time.
Joel Friedlander
Oct 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: designed-by-me
I really enjoyed this debut thriller from the multi-talented Joanna Penn. The first in a projected series of thrillers based on religious and cultural history, it features an engaging heroine in Morgan Sierra, a secretive underground organization and some creepy villains.

The book is a little like a Dan Brown novel but with better writing. The action moves from one exotic locale to another but you'll be surprised just how much you learn about early church history along the way.

It kept me going u
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F.R.
May 25, 2017 rated it liked it
I think I picked up STONE OF FIRE at exactly the right moment. After a week filled with dark and distressing headlines, it was a fantastic relief to immerse myself in a piece of sheer escapism.

That’s what it is at its core – unpretentious escapist fun. It’s just happy whisking you from exotic locale to exotic locale, asking you to cling on to its helter-skelter spirit of adventure and not look back. Whisked together in its story of powerful ephemera from Jesus’s time, are an Oxford academic wit
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Kristen Jett
As found on Pen and Muse

Secret KJ fact: I am OBSESSED with the Indiana Jones movies. (Not counting the last one, because no.) So the thought of reading a book with a character like Indiana Jones, but female had me bouncing for joy. I didn’t always relate to her, but I did admire her. I’m drawn to novels with strong female protagonists, and found Morgan Sierra to fit the bill. Morgan Sierra is pretty kick-ass…or at least she used to be before she gave up her Special-Ops life to live a more qui
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Seeley James
May 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Morgan Sierra, an Oxford psychologist and former Israeli Army conscript, finds herself the target of an attack by a shadowy group of religious fanatics known as Thanatos. Her sister and niece are kidnapped by another religious whacko and Morgan is left to save everyone. Luckily, a military hunk from a long forgotten branch of the English bureaucracy called ARKANE offers a helping hand. Sorta. We understand early on that ARKANE and Morgan have differing end games planned. Nonetheless, they work t ...more
T.A. Sullivan
Jul 03, 2015 rated it did not like it
I usually try very hard to find something good to say about every book I review; however, I found little to recommend about J.F. Penn’s “Stone of Fire” book. It’s free; the concept is interesting…did I mention that it’s free?

Despite all the hype that Ms. Penn issues regarding her novels, I was far from impressed with this book. The premise was interesting: stones from the Pentecost that might contain mystical powers. However, the writing was less than stellar…in fact, it was barely adequate.

Duri
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Werner
Apr 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pentecost is Joanna Penn’s debut thriller novel and it’s a good one.

The hero, Morgan Sierra, is a biblical scholar and an Oxford trained clinical psychologist. Before becoming an academic she was a member of the Israeli Defense Forces, where she was trained in combat and uses the self-defense art of Krav Maga to kick some serious ass in this fast-paced religious thriller.

Morgan and her sister are keepers of two of the 12 Pentecost stones once carried by the Apostles. The stones came from the roc
...more
Marc
May 12, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It's been awhile since I've read a thriller and I was looking for an enthralling one. Sadly, this was not the case here. I had one too many problems with Pentecost and it seemed like every time I got over one, another one popped up or returned.

For example, in the beginning, there were some interesting ideas that I wanted to think or learn about. I never got a chance because the sentences were really long and kept going, along with these huge paragraphs of description, which felt like everything
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Tony
Feb 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mix history, fast-action and fiction together and you get Joanna Penn's debut novel, Pentecost. Each page prompts you to turn to the next one, making it difficult for you to put this book down. This thriller is set in the Christian history that most are familiar with, but takes a new look at it through the author's creative and intriguing fiction that is woven throughout the story. The characters, plot and action weave together keep your interest piqued on every page. A lot of comparisons have b ...more
Stephen Clynes
May 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Follow Morgan Sierra as she searches for the Pentecost stones in this thriller about religious relics.

Joanna writes a wonderful and entertaining thriller that should appeal to all readers regardless of their faith or views on religion. Her book has a lovely mix of fact and fiction. There is lots of history and background in this story which is gently explained. You do not need to be a religious scholar to understand what is going on because as this story unfolds, the characters explain both the
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Jordan McCollum
Oct 10, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011, free, kindle
I followed the author a while back and was really excited to be offered a free review copy.

Despite some minor copyediting problems, I really enjoyed this book. While I knew the stones were a fictional device, I was content to suspend my disbelief. The adventure moved along so quickly that I read the book in about twelve hours--including taking time off to be a mom. It's Da Vinci Code meets Indiana Jones.

Unlike the author, I do not have an advanced degree in Theology, but I was able to follow and
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Toni Osborne
Jul 10, 2015 rated it it was ok
Book 1, in the Arkane series

Also under the title “Pentecost”

This fast-paced and highly imaginative story weaves a mix of Indiana Jones thrilling action into a tale that explores ancient myths and religion à la Dan Brown.

“Stone of Fire” brings Morgan Sierra, a knowledgeable Oxford individual with an Israeli Special forces background to work with Jake Timber, a handsome Arkane operative, their quest is to find the twelve “Pentecost stones” taken from the tomb of Jesus Christ by the apostles. The s
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Eliza Banerjee
Jul 13, 2017 rated it did not like it
I downloaded Stone of Fire after avidly reading the Creative Pennfor a few months. I am a big fan of Penn's non-fiction titles, so I was quite eager to read her first novel.

I am not rating because of the writing or the plot.

I began reading knowing that this was her first novel, and I figured the writing may not be as strong as it is now.

What ruined the experience for me was the background for her main character. As someone who has been studying the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for almost ten yea
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Mark Tilbury
Oct 11, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Morgan Sierra finds herself with very little time to gather 12 pieces of stone before a comet passes over Earth on Pentecost and her sister and niece are hurt. Or worse!

The stones, believed to have once been with the 12 Apostles on the first Pentecost, are wanted by many people and not all for good reasons. If Morgan can't gather them all and avoid the dangers of such a task then it won't be just her and her sister's family in trouble, everyone could be.

This book is action packed from the beginn
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Dava Stewart
Apr 09, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the perfect book for vacation. It entertains, yet doesn't demand too much. Reading it made me wish I was at the beach - not because it is set at the beach, but because it's exactly the kind of book I'd read while at the beach.

Joanna Penn has been compared frequently to Dan Brown, and it's an apt comparison. Pentecost is action-packed, with the main characters circling the globe in about a week. There are bad guys, good guys, and secrets unrevealed.

My main criticism is that one of the b
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N
May 19, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
When I started reading this my first thought was, "Yowzers, she should sue Dan Brown, he totally ripped off her opening chapter ... oh, wait, copyright 2011. Never mind."

It went downhill from there.

When I was in middle school I had a brilliant idea for a new Asterix. I got right to work. One afternoon and a lot of crumpled computer paper later, I gave up. Looking back, it seemed like a brilliant idea to a middle schooler, but it was basically ripping off something else ... and I discovered I h
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John Bowen
Jan 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love few things more than a story featuring mystery, history, inventive mythology, great characters, and a jumbo, catering-sized quantity of action (which probably explains why I wrote one myself recently).

JF Penn's Pentecost doesn't disappoint.

Great fun.

- John Bowen is the author of 'Vessel' and 'Where the Dead Walk'. You can find him here on GoodReads, and his published work at Amazon.
Wayne Marinovich
Jul 16, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A engaging read that is laced with action across several destinations, which are the types of books I love. Well researched and thought out, with good character development.

Look forward to reading the second in the series
Meredith Dennis
Aug 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting book! Can't wait for the next one!
Ronel Janse van Vuuren
The opening chapter immediately grabbed me and pulled me into the nun Aruna Maria’s plight, setting up the troubles to come.

Morgan is a complex character and I immediately bonded with her – perhaps because we’re both suspicious about coincidences and on guard for danger lurking around every corner. She’s a kick-ass heroine (she used to be in the Israeli military and she’s an Oxford psychologist).

The way the different locations were described made me feel like I’m there – it’s the small details t
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Charley Girl
Jun 22, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-read
It has all the makings of a great mystery and I liked it but only liked it.

The characters are interesting and diverse but I just wanted to like them more, care more and to cheer them on. I didn't really feel it for Morgan, Jake, or Faye.

There was so much more Christian history than mystery that I wasn't gripped with a need to see what happened. The ending wasn't a surprise either which is why I gave it two stars.

Angela Ford
May 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Loved it!

This is a fun action adventure with plenty of danger. I enjoyed the first in series and will be back for more!
Melissa Hayden
Penn has an amazing way of describing the city through the religious view and feel of the people. I find this attractive as it tells of the city and it's personality along with the people here, setting a whole stage easily. However at times my interest waned in some of the religious descriptions. I was really glad Penn didn't waste time on the uneventful trips but focuses on the search. The search of the cathedrals and citadels is where she blends in their history and the story, along with great ...more
Andrew Montooth
May 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of: thrillers, Steve Berry, James Rollins
Recommended to Andrew by: the author via podcast
I stumbled across Joanna Penn while looking for writing podcasts to take on a long drive. Her podcasts were the most relevant and insightful I’ve found anywhere. And her straightforward references to her own novels (prudent not pushy) intrigued me. If the podcasts were that good, was her writing? So I picked up PENTECOST and PROPHECY, the first two volumes in her ARKANE series. I’ve reviewed the first here, and am working on a separate review for the second.

Morgan Sierra, an Oxford psychologist
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S.W.
Jun 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: action, owned
Set in some spectacular locations
I can’t quite remember how I heard about Stone of Fire, but I do know I picked it up from Amazon. As soon as I saw the cover it had me hooked. It looked exciting and I’m a sucker for a good cover.

The book starts off well as we are witness to the tragedy of a poor old lady being robbed of a sacred stone. Her demise was a strong start that made me want to know why such a thing could happen.

Soon after, our heroine, Morgan, is introduced to the story. She also has a
...more
Werner
Mar 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pentecost is Joanna Penn's debut thriller novel and it's a good one. The hero, Morgan Sierra, is a biblical scholar and an Oxford trained clinical psychologist. Before becoming an academic she was a member of the Israeli Defense Forces, where she was trained in combat and uses the self-defense art of Krav Maga to kick some serious ass in this fast-paced religious thriller.

Morgan and her sister are keepers of two of the 12 Pentecost stones once carried by the Apostles. The stones came from the ro
...more
Gina
You never know what you are going to get when you get a freebie from the Kindle store, but Pentecost was a wonderful surprise. Yes, I thought it would be a cheap, low rate, Dan Brown type of book. However, I have to admit that I loved it. It was just as good as any Dan Brown book and I plan on reading more of the series. The plotline is original and full of adventure. I was on the edge of my seat and read the book in about 2 days. Morgan Sierra is a psychologist who specializes in religious psyc ...more
Andy Beau
Jan 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I highly recommend Joanna Penn's first book, Pentecost, the start of an exciting new action-adventure lost-artifacts series. This novel chronicles the adventures of Morgan Sierra, an ex-Israeli secret ops turned Oxford religion professor, and Jake Timber, an agent of ARKANE. ARKANE is a super-secret British government agency involved with the many mysterious lost, and sometimes highly dangerous, ancient artifacts of the world. Morgan and Jake must travel around Europe, North Africa, the Middle E ...more
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1,952 followers
I'm the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the ARKANE thriller series, and the London Crime Thriller series.

The fast-paced ARKANE thrillers weave together historical artifacts, global locations, a kick-ass protagonist and a hint of the supernatural. Described by readers as a female Indiana Jones meets The Da Vinci Code.

One Day In Budapest is a chilling view of a possible future as
...more

Other books in the series

ARKANE (10 books)
  • Crypt of Bone (ARKANE #2)
  • Ark of Blood (ARKANE #3)
  • One Day In Budapest (ARKANE #4)
  • Day of the Vikings (ARKANE #5)
  • Gates of Hell (ARKANE #6)
  • One Day in New York (ARKANE #7)
  • Destroyer of Worlds (ARKANE #8)
  • End of Days (ARKANE #9)
  • Valley of Dry Bones (ARKANE #10)
“blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. ” 2 likes
“The secrets they kept were the demons that crept under the battlements of prayer he tried to strengthen each night.  “Ben,” 1 likes
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