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Sign of The Cross

by Chris Kuzneski

      An historical, church-related fictional story based on biblical teachings, centering around a clean, easy-reading murder mystery that involves the finding of scrolls and hidden teachings. There are some graphic scenes, however the violence is necessary to the story. A series of murders occur all over the globe. Teams seeking to prevent the crimes race against teams determined to carry them out, both acting with precision timing. Everything within the story stems from one personís desire -but is it to keep the Church a living viable entity or to destroy it? You guess.

I could say Chris Kuzneski is the next Daniel Brown (The DaVinci Code) or Michael Baigent, (with his Jesus Papers) or Matilde Asensi (The Last Cato) but then that would be simply lumping him into a category and leaving him there. Kuzneski doesnít deserve that lumping and leaving. He has so much going for him that it is really difficult to say, in simple adjectives, how much I am impressed with this young author. This book was fast paced, cohesive and very well put together. It was exciting and slightly humorous, making it easy to read and enjoy in todayís perspective. I was also impressed by the authorís abilities to tie everything together and make it all stick to the final ending. I must say that I was rather disappointed by the ending, but realize that it had to be made this way, so that the primary entity in this book could stay intact. It was a thoroughly engrossing read, and one that I didnít want to end.

"Erik Jansen was about to die. He just didnít know how. Or why." This opening scene, set on a shore in Denmark, is both the beginning of the end for Eric Jansen, and the start of a global odyssey to bring out the truth, or a vendetta, the motivation for which the Vatican has been hiding for two thousand years. There is an archeologist, Dr. Charles Boyd, who has been very successful in a totally different area of his life, and he is looking for a catacomb. Boyd is under the eyes of a very nefarious person who wants what Boyd will find -either to expose it or to keep it all for himself- although, his daughter, Maria Pelati, will try to prevent that from happening. There is an International team of mercenaries, the MANIACS, headed by Jonathon Payne and David Jones, who are hot on Boydís trail; as are the killers of the priest, Eric Jansen. The Sign of The Cross is compelling, starting with the words Ďin the name of the fatherí painted by hand above Erik Jansenís body. The Pelati family is at the heart of this novel in many ways. Nick Dial and many operatives of Interpol come together to work around the clock, and the globe, to stop the grisly murders, or crucifixions. Many things happen all at once and Kuzneski keeps the threads going back and forth, bringing the readers right to the edge of their seats while weaving a wonderful story.

This is a book that is too good to put down and too interesting to want to finish. I have reviewed several of this type of book lately, and sincerely found this one to be the one that I will remember and look back on. Iím sure that. "I read that and it was really great, and I canít wait for the movie to come out," will be popping from my mouth during discussions about the many books that I read and review. This young man writes with a maturity that is evident from the very first page. I canít wait for more from him.

The Book

Jove Books/Berkley Publishing Group
September 26, 2006
Trade Paperback
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The Reviewer

Claudia VanLydegraf
Reviewed 2006
© 2006