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Sliding Fingers

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The Captain's Daughter
Peter David
The Eye of God: A Sigma Force Novel
James Rollins
A Curious Man: The Strange and Brilliant Life of Robert "Believe It or Not!" Ripley
Neal Thompson
Map of Bones  - James Rollins Pros:
Exciting thriller, interesting look into history

A little over the top; hard to keep track of large number of characters.

A secret subset of a secret organization searches for hidden and or forgotten knowledge. Knowledge is power, and this organization, a part of the Dragon Court, cares more for power than knowledge.

The secret organization, a offshoot of the Dragon Court, traces its history back to the middle ages and has member of “pure” blood (somewhat kept pure by use of caged women, mentioned but not described). The members are descendants of kings and queens, and other lesser aristocrats. While the Dragon Court exists in real life, according to Rollins, this is a fictional subset of that group.

Joining the Dragon Court's quest is a woman from a mercenary group. Directly fighting the actions of the Dragon Court are one member of the Vatican's intelligence service, one member of Italy's police division that handles antiquities (Lieutenant Rachel Verona), and the USA SIGMA organization (lead by Grayson Pierce). SIGMA is an undercover US agency that employs military trained agents that also have advanced degrees in various science fields. Why is the Vatican involved? The first attack by the Dragon Court is on a church in Cologne Germany (and the book is deeply involved with the activities and history of the early church, including the Three Magi).

The story has been well-constructed and follows a logical path. The characters are, mostly, almost fully formed, though the large group of characters does sometimes slide back into being just names on the page. The book is set in Germany, Italy, Egypt, and France (though some of the action occurs in other countries as the characters pass through them).

In the end, I would give this book 4.40 stars.