Secrets of the Dead

Overview

The utterly compelling new thriller from the author of The Lazarus Vault.

To reach the living, navigate the dead.

In a villa on the coast of Montenegro, Abby Cormac witnesses the brutal murder of her lover, diplomat Michael Lascaris. The last thing she remembers is a gun pointed directly at her. She wakes to find herself at the centre of a diplomatic nightmare. Everyone wants an answer but no one wants to ...

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Secrets of the Dead

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Overview

The utterly compelling new thriller from the author of The Lazarus Vault.

To reach the living, navigate the dead.

In a villa on the coast of Montenegro, Abby Cormac witnesses the brutal murder of her lover, diplomat Michael Lascaris. The last thing she remembers is a gun pointed directly at her. She wakes to find herself at the centre of a diplomatic nightmare. Everyone wants an answer but no one wants to listen. Even her employers at the Foreign Office believe she's hiding something. She is completely alone.

As Abby tries to piece together the last few months of Michael's life in order to get at the truth, she soon realises that he wasn't quite what he seemed. What exactly was his relationship with one of the most ruthless men in the Balkans - a war criminal who has never been brought to justice? And what links Michael's gift to her of a gold necklace with its Christian monogram, a 4th century manuscript left in the shadow of Emperor Constantine's palace at Trier and an inscription on a tomb in Rome?

When Abby investigates further, it becomes clear that someone wants to suppress a secret, one that has been kept hidden for centuries. And they will stop at nothing to do so.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The past proves more memorable than the present in this so-so thriller from British author Harper (The Mosaic of Shadows). In the present, Abby Cormac, a British Foreign Office official employed by an EU mission in Kosovo, and her boyfriend, Michael Lascaris, take a break at a friend’s villa in Montenegro, where early one morning Abby wakes up to discover Michael meeting with a strange man, who pulls a gun on her. Abby flees, but the gunman succeeds in shooting her. When Abby recovers from her bullet wound, she determines to find out why she was attacked, but her search for answers follows a mundane course. Meanwhile, in 337 A.D. Constantinople, the emperor Constantine charges Gaius Valerius to find out who bludgeoned a bishop to death in a city where “not all murders are crimes. And not all criminals are guilty.” A necklace that figures in Valerius’s investigation holds an important clue for Abby centuries later. Fans of Harper’sstraight historicals will hope that he returns to that genre. (Dec.)
From the Publisher
Praise for Other Titles by Tom Harper:

"In the tradition of The Da Vinci Code, a page-turner of a novel. Like Dan Brown, Tom Harper knows how to ratchet up the tension."
Choice magazine

"Scholarly but speedy narrative, steeped in medieval horrors ranging from flogging to famine, all anchored in what feels like a passion for history and spelling out the way things were."
Literary Review

"Tom Harper writes with strident clarity in this epic tale of murder and betrayal, bloodshed and romance. Gripping from the first page, the reader is swept up in this colourful and convincing portrayal of an Emperor and his realm, under siege. Well-researched, and cinematic in its imagery, this is a fast-paced and exciting debut."
Ink

"Harper effortlessly draws the reader into the court intrigues and conspiracies of 11th-century Byzantium in his outstanding debut."
Publishers Weekly

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780099547853
  • Publisher: Random House UK
  • Publication date: 10/1/2012
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 480
  • Sales rank: 1,153,380
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

TOM HARPER (real name Edwin Thomas) won the CWA debut award in 2001 for The Blighted Cliffs. He also wrote The Mosaic of Shadows, Knights of the Cross, Siege of Heaven, Lost Temple, Book of Secrets and The Lazarus Vault. He lives in York and is the current Chairman of the Crime Writers' Association.

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