08 December, 2009

Book Review: The Last Templar by Raymond Khoury

This was a perfect airport read. In fact I got this book from my dad, who got it in an airport on his last vacation. It is a Divinci Codeish type book, which may not be a real term, but should be. Lord knows the market was flooded with “Jesus had sex with Mary M” type stories. What I liked about this one is that you don’t actually know what the hell secret they are looking for until close to the end.

The story switches back and forth between modern day and the 13th century (I think it’s the 13th century, it’s the 1200’s I can never remember if that’s the 12th or 13th century, so it actually must be the 13th because if it was the 12th it would make sense and I could remember that…) We meet a young Templar knight in the past. We learn that the Templar’s are facing their largest defeat and we get our first glimpse of “the secret”. We are then plopped into modern day NYC and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. We meet up with Tess. A former archeologist now turned desk jockey at the prestigious Manoukian Institute.

“People just noticed her, period. They always had. And who could blame them. The seductive mass of curls framing the warm green eyes that radiated intelligence usually triggered it. The healthy, thirty-six year old frame that moved in relaxed, fluid strides confirmed it, and the fact that she was totally oblivious to her charms sealed it. “

Airport writing at its finest!

There is a heist at the museum where Tess and her family were attending the opening of “Treasures of the Vatican”. 4 horsemen dressed in full Templar gear trotted up the Museum’s stairs into the museum and stole what looked like a strange box, after decapitating a museum guard of course.

Soon enough we meet Sean Reilly the FBI agent in charge and Tess’s love interest. This is not giving anything away as you have to have a love interest in a story like this. How can a man and a woman be together and not fall into bed together? It would be unnatural.

The story goes back and forth between the present and the past, each time giving a bit more information. The Vatican is involved (but of course). The secret could topple nations. Tess and Sean just want the truth, but the truth can be slippery.

It’s an ok story. I did really like the secret. I don’t know if it has been explored before, but I found it believable, or at least not completely unbelievable. I am a bit surprised at Tess’s asshattery. But then again, why should the guy always wear the asshat?