DR. Jefferson Burke likes his life. It is full of routine and schedules that is predictable. Then one afternoon a odd, middle age man who introduces himself only as Columbo, enters his office and presents Dr Burke with an adventure that could change history as we know it.
As others have commented, this has a very "Indiana Jones" feel to it. We are taken from the hall of an Illinois University to mountains in Afghanistan, to the California coast on a whirlwind adventure to track down a legendary scroll, all the while being hunted by one of the most powerful and evil men in the world.
I really enjoyed this book. It was full of characters that were well written and you knew the good guys from the bad guys. Sometime you just need a book that you know who are all the players are and there are no surprises in that area. However the research and the vivid detail that the author presented in places that he wrote about were terrific. It was so well done I could pictures these places in my mind. I love writing like.
The only downside, was that for a christian novel we get very little about God or Jesus or Salvation. This is that thing that kept me from giving this book a five star rating. If all you are looking for is a good story, then you have found it.
I was provided a pre-release copy of this book, and although I was familiar with many of the author's non-fiction works, I had not previously read one of his novels. I was hooked on the story from the first chapter.
Although published by Zondervan, a Christian book publisher, Jefferson Burke & the Secret of the Lost Scroll reads more like an action-adventure from the general market, reminiscent of The Raiders of the Lost Ark or The Di Vinci Code.
Collins draws strong characters, including a former American-Asian Army Ranger turned FBI agent by the name of Lisa Marie Cho, who often drives the main action of the plot. She is accompanied by university professor Jefferson Burke, a sometimes-unwilling traveler in the ride of/for his life, who is a compelling and likable character none-the-less. Despite their differences, Burke and Cho work together well as they seek to unravel clues from a mystery that has crossed centuries and international borders.
Blurring the line between fiction and reality, Collins weaves in elements of real history--such as secret societies and the inclusion of well- and lesser-known historical characters sprinkled throughout the plot--pulling the reader into the "experience" of the story. This is a fast-paced, well-written action adventure that will entertain a cross-section of readers.
I was thankful to receive a review copy of Ace Collins larger-than-life fiction novel. Jefferson Burke reminds me a little bit of three movies, National Treasure, Indiana Jones and Da Vinci Code! What a mix!
Jefferson Burke is a school professor in America who reminds me a little of Harrison Ford's character. He's compelled to uncover the mysteries and clues to find the Holy Grail. Jefferson has the same passion and drive to find lost scrolls. If these scrolls were published it could change life and history as everyone knew it.
Burke explains, "Curiosity is not a fight so much as a curse. Curiosity steals focus. It challenges patience and upsets emotions and plans. He knew this better than most. It was curiosity that drove his life, and it had almost ruined it more times than he could count."
Ace Collins has a brilliant imagination and sets this mysterious story up with an explosive beginning. An old man asks Burke for help in finding lost scrolls. He explains the urgency of mission was to beat Krueger, a cruel, evil man at finding them first. Krueger wanted the scrolls to rule the world and blackmail the church! The old man said the scrolls where from Joseph, the husband of Mary, mother of Jesus. Krueger was convinced the scrolls were lost because the Christians were hiding the fact that Jesus was actually the son of Joseph, not the son of God!
Jefferson Burke couldn't pass up an opportunity like this. He was drawn to this quest he couldn't explain it. Life for Burke is suddenly turned upside down as he races to find the first clue in finding the ancient scrolls.
The government gets involved and sends Agent Cho to help Burke in his quest. Reluctantly Burke agrees to join forces with Agent Cho to case down clues and artifacts that take them all around the Globe. He realizes Cho's extensive research in how secret societies hid the book of Joseph could be valuable.
While on their search Cho and Jefferson start exploring their souls and wondering what they will do when they find the truth. Would they tell the world that Joseph was really the father of Jesus? Could they broadcast that information? They had and obligation to report the truth didn't they? If Krueger got the scrolls first, he would blackmail the church and if they refused his demands Krueger would simply print the scrolls for the entire world to see. It's a dilemma!
If you liked Indiana Jones, National Treasure or Da Vinci Code movies you will enjoy this thrill ride filled with action, adventure and suspense.
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