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The Sign [NOOK Book]

Overview

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Last Templar

New York Times bestselling author Raymond Khoury returns with a provocative thriller set at the intersection of science, religion, and history in which a sign in the heavens...
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The Sign

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Overview

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Last Templar

New York Times bestselling author Raymond Khoury returns with a provocative thriller set at the intersection of science, religion, and history in which a sign in the heavens may unleash hell on earth...




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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
In 2006, Raymond Khoury snatched our attention with The Last Templar; then he followed that secret society thriller with The Sanctuary. Now he returns with The Sign, an earthshaking nail-biter that from its very first page plunges us into a realm where even an apocalypse would seem gentle business. A suspenseful thriller rooted in science, history, and occult subjects.
Steve Berry
There's a fine line between science and religion. Too often that border becomes blurred, or confused, usually through either ignorance or fanaticism, which nearly always leads to conflict. The Sign expertly explores this ever-shifting line of myth and reality. But this book is not a religious thriller. Nobody is trying to destroy the Catholic Church; Christ is not being cloned; and there are no ancient theological secrets that could change the course of history. Instead, Raymond Khoury explores the concept a religion by posing the ever-present question What if? in a unique and appealing way. Protagonists Matt Sherwood, a former car thief (which is interesting in and of itself), and news reporter, Gracie Logan, are who Khoury calls upon to determine if God has finally decided to reveal himself, or is something more sinister afoot? I like that in a Khoury book the title actually means something. That was true in The Last Templar and The Sanctuary, and it is equally true here. The sign is important. This story captivates with plausibility and imagination. It's fiercely intelligent and equally curious. Khoury casts his fictional world in a dark pall -- a fitting atmosphere for his protagonists as they race both time and shadowy instincts toward a scintillating conclusion. The Sign is a rapid paced adventure that delivers equal quantities of story and lesson, neither one suffering in the process. Khoury's background as a screenwriter shows. He is especially adept at action scenes. His expertly chosen verbs cause the scenes to leap from the page. You can literally feel the blows as they're landed; wince as the bullets find their marks. He has an intense brand of storytelling all his own. The Sign is a prize to be savored.
Publishers Weekly

Set against a backdrop of ancient and modern religious conflict, this solid thriller from bestseller Khoury (The Last Templar) explores a number of current planetary preoccupations, from far-right political demagoguery to global warming. While in Antarctica covering the breakup of the continent's ice shelf, TV reporter Grace Logan and her crew are astounded to see a "bright, shimmering sphere of light" in the sky. They film this astronomical anomaly as it runs through a variety of tricks, then disappears. People around the globe wonder: is it a UFO? a sign from God? or some sort of techno trick fashioned by perpetrators unknown? After the blazing sign reappears over the Arctic, a possible link emerges to an old Catholic priest, who has heard on a desolate mountain in Egypt a portentous voice in his head ("Are you ready to lead your people to salvation?"). Unrelenting action and a suitably twisted ending compensate for the clichéd prose. (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

Lately, several thrillers (i.e., Tom Knox's The Genesis Secret) have taken potshots at religion, pitting sophistication and intellect against devotion and personal faith. In a departure from his time-shifting narratives about document-protecting secret societies (e.g., The Last Templar, The Sanctuary), Khoury's new novel challenges that dichotomy. During filming in Antarctica, a news crew witnesses a shimmering sphere, unexplainable by any scientific expert. Meanwhile, in Egypt, the broadcast of the event startles a group of Coptic priests, who recognize the symbol as identical to one rendered by a prominent priest visiting their monastery. Is the mysterious symbol a sign from God or a hoax to discredit the faithful? Speaking through Father Jerome, Khoury pitches an eloquent argument for the value of personal responsibility toward one another while maintaining careful stewardship of the earth. This is a thoughtful book with a powerful message and yet also a thrilling read with compelling, well-developed characters. Highly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, LJ1/09.]
—Laura A.B. Cifelli

Kirkus Reviews
Khoury's third high-concept thriller (Sanctuary, 2007, etc.) features much ado about an apparition in the Antarctic sky. Is it a sign from God-or maybe not so much?TV journalist Gracie Logan can't believe her telegenic eyes. There she is in Antarctica, doing a piece on global warming when suddenly . . . OK, what exactly is it up there? "It was beyond understanding, beyond definition." Well, whatever it actually is, it's awesome: big, bright and more than a little scary. "It's a sign," says one onlooker as she crosses herself, clearly a believer. "Of what?" someone else asks skeptically, thus launching a debate that will grow ever more heated in the days to come. Meanwhile, in another part of the planet (Boston, to be precise), hulking ex-convict Matt Sherwood, currently committed to the straight and narrow, meets with nerdy Vince Bellinger, who is the bearer of shocking tidings. Seeing the televised apparition has activated neurons in Vince's spectacular cognitive apparatus, convincing him that Danny Sherwood, Matt's beloved younger brother and Vince's fellow brainiac, did not in fact die two years ago in an accidental chopper crash into shark-infested waters while working on some extremely hush-hush science project. For reasons beyond the ken of ordinary folk, Vince has become certain that foul play was involved. Before he can do much to explain, however, he too meets death by taser and syringe, a fate Matt narrowly evades. Matt, in whom the blood of action heroes flows, now knows he has no choice but to dig for answers. Not easy. Secret agendas and dueling conspiracies form daunting obstacles, but he presses on to the end of the tunnel, where he'll find Gracie waiting along with theanswers, eternal and otherwise. Uninspired.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101052655
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 5/19/2009
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 576
  • Sales rank: 99,015
  • File size: 763 KB

Meet the Author

Raymond Khoury is the bestselling author of The Last Templar and The Sanctuary. An acclaimed screenwriter and producer for both television and film, he lives in London with his family.









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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3
( 101 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(19)

4 Star

(28)

3 Star

(20)

2 Star

(18)

1 Star

(16)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 101 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 7, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Huge Disappointment

    I've read Raymond Khoury's work in the past and enjoyed it; however this novel not only didn't live up to his past work, it was downright irritating to read. If you happen to be a super-far-left Marxist type Socialist you might enjoy this predictable story. I was not only angered that Mr. Khoury uses the "ANYTHING (even if it's amoral or unethical) is OK as long as it meets leftist political agendas" to justify character behaviors. Truly, the character's solution at the end of the book is not the path of truth and honor, but LITERALLY "We're going to lie because it meets leftist standards and we don't want the right gaining political power." It's blatent. Mr. Khoury also has an addendum to his novel that is a many-page discourse on how awful President Bush was (get over it - he's out of office), a tired, old, has-been argument. The worst part of all this bashing of the political right in the US is that Mr. Khoury lives in the UK. Bush was never HIS president and this is not his country, and as a proud American I was greatly offended to read Khoury's nasty commentary. Just to be clear, I am NOT a Republican, never have been, and never will be. I simply have no patience or respect for lame, worn-out garbage that refuses to acknowledge there are good and honest people on all political fronts (not just left and right). Mr. Khoury, I will NEVER purchase another book of yours - I refuse to put a penny in your pocket.

    8 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 29, 2010

    A far left, politically correct piece of garbage.

    This will be the last time I even pick up one of this writer's books. He goes out of his way to insult a very large part of the American people. Most of his writing deals with global warming and the christian people. The story line is hard to follow with the hero Matt, running around killing people, stealing cars, kidnapping, etc, and no police in site. A very poorly written story from a writer who appears to be living in England and knows everthing about this country. Stay home and write about your socialist home country.

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    This Book Radiates HATRED!

    The cover of this book states that it is "A Novel". It is not. Far from it. And I for one feel cheated.

    The so called plot of this book is nothing but a cover to cover, thinly disguised platform for Koury's hatred of all things Christian, Conservative, or American. Non stop personal attacks of specific, real people.

    And the worst part is that he is getting away with it. If the tables were turned, the backlash would be front page news!

    Having read his first two books, my husband and I were both looking forward to this book. I happened to be the one to read it first, and wished that I hadn't. It has left a very bad mark on my mind and my soul. My husband shall not be reading it. We plan on giving away his first two books to charity, throwing this one out, and never ever buying another Khoury book.

    To us, he has committed literary suicide.

    For an enjoyable read try Steve Berry, Dan Brown, Clive Cussler, Nelson DeMille, Preston/Child, James Rollins, all entertaining without undo preaching.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    Wow! What a disappointment!

    Khoury's first two books were inspiring enough to purchase "The Sign," unfortunately, I realized my mistake a third of the way through this author's latest creation. The redundancy and persistence of Khoury to overemphasize his personal feelings on religion and the current political climate completely overshadows any semblance of story-telling. I'm really not sure I want to tempt fate again if he decides to pursue another novel.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 15, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The Worse Khoury Book Yet

    "I get it, I get it." That is what you will be screaming about half way through this. Khoury doesn't hide his opinions too well in this lackluster book. Characters are not that believable and there are pages of their monologues about religion. Don't bother reading this and honestly it will probably be my last Khoury book.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 27, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Really Irritated Me!!!!

    I have liked his other books, but while this one had an interesting plot line, Khoury was way too over the top in his drinking of the global warming koolaid and his persistent bashing of the USA. I agree with him that far too many people have died for really stupid religious reasons, but this book just took his left-leanings too far. As someone who does not even live in the US, if he wants to write any more about screwed up governments he needs to write about his own...or perhaps Greece. I'm removing him from my reading list.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 6, 2010

    Disappointing

    His books are normally worth a light summer read, but this one leaves much to be desired. Getting his politics as the major part of the story line does not do the story any credit nor does the story give any credit to his strident political views.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 6, 2010

    Here WeGo Again

    A fairly good read-only Khoury should be getting paid by DNC, or at least re elect Obama committee-"climate"opinions aside, it's not the worst book out there it could have been better with less kowtowing to present administration.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Personal political opinion novel unsuccessfully disguised as a thriller.

    The first novel by this author was compelling and suspensful this is not the case with this novel. The plot of the book is not immeadeatly clear and when it does become clear it is evident that the author is using the book to express his views on global warming and religon and trying and failing at disguising it at a thriller. The book is insulting to anyone who doesn't share the opions expressed in the book.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 20, 2010

    Excellent and Informative

    Every once in awhile a book of fiction combined with nonfiction theories hits the market as a thriller that keeps the reader riveted to the end. The only drawback to this story was the author's obvious animosity to anything connected to religion- all religions. Also his belief in a man made global warming is way off the mark. The recent geological activities with volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis should be called natural global changes- not man-made global warming. Other than that he writes a very good read.

    3 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    What a disappointment

    I wish I had read the reviews here before wasting my money on this rubbish. I struggled through about a third of the book and finally gave up. There was nothing about any of the characters that was appealing; there was no plot to catch my interest, and the writing was tedious. I read as far as I did because I couldn't imagine a book reported to be good (as this one was) could be so bad. This book is, as has been said here, nothing but a political yammerfest written so badly that it is neither a good thriller, nor a good political discussion. It will be the last time I waste money on this author :(

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The book become an honest debate of what role religion should have on government and the need to fight fanatics in government--at whatever cost

    Dr. Dominick Reese and his protege Dr. Danny Sherwood, from MIT are working in an ultra secret project in Skeleton Coast, Namibia. It's a processing computer program --more like massively distributed intelligence--creating an optical system based on corner cubed reflectors. As they are suppose to end the project something goes very wrong...

    In the Wadi Natrum dessert of Egypt, up in the mountains, the reverend Father Jerome starts hearing voices--"Are you ready to serve?"

    Two years later, in the Amundsen Sea, Antarctica, Grace (Gracie) Logan, with her cameraman, Dalton Kwan, and her producer, Howard Finch are on the deck of the RSS James Clark Ross. They are witnessing the breakup of the arctic ice shelf. As Gracie begins her report, a massive shimmering sphere of light suddenly appears in the sky, enveloping the ship in a luminous blaze--disappearing as mysteriously as it arrived. The entire world witnesses the event as it unfolds.

    In the Deir Al-Suryan Monastery, in Wadi Natrum, Egypt, news arrive of the event. The abbot, Father Kirilios, is notified by Yusuf Zacharia and Father Ameen recalls that Father Jerome has been drawing the same "sign" that appeared in Antarctica on his caves near the monastery.

    Father Ameen takes matter on his hands and notifies Gracie's team who fly to Egypt and when they find Father Jerome another sphere appears over his head as he is presented to the media by Gracie's team.

    In Boston, Matt Sherwood, brother of the presumed dead Danny Sherwood, gets a mysterious visit by Vince Belinger who informs him that the "sign" may be a hoax created by his brother and that Danny may still be alive.

    The reader is then treated to a great thriller of adventure where Matt, Suba (Jabba) Komlosy, Danny's co-worker, Gracie, and two opposing "owners" of the sign fight an all out war for the story of a lifetime: Has God finally chosen to reveal himself through a Catholic priest? Or is someone accelerating the birth of a new age in which faith, hope, and belief, will fall before the altars of power greed and death?

    The book has a slow start and introduces too many characters at the beginning without properly developing them. I was forced to diagram all the names to be able to keep pace. Once you enter the second half of the book, it gets very captivating and it's hard to put down.

    I loved the pun given to Dan Brown on page 257: "Look at what a third rate sci-fi writer was able to pull off, and everyone knew he was only out to get stinking rich."

    I also loved the attacks on the GOP on page 372: "We just had eight years of an oil wildcatter I wouldn't even hire to run a car wash, eight years of a guy who thought his instincts were manifestations of God's will, eight years of criminal incompetence and unbridled arrogance that brought the country to its knees, and did we learn anything? Hell it took the economic meltdown of the century to just scrape through his victory. This was no landslide (election of President Barrack), Larry. Damn near half the country voted for more of the same--or worse. We actually came close to putting someone who thinks "The Flintstones" is based on fact, someone who only got a passport a year before the election and who wouldn't take an interview for a month while she was whisked away to be quietly educated about what's happening in the real world, someone who actually thinks she's going to se

    2 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 4, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Back to Form - Raymond Khoury's The Sign picks up where The Sanctuary fell short...

    The Sign is a great story - plot devices from political intrigue (without being boring or long-winded) to religious and action themes abound.

    Several of the author's evident opinions, such as his blatant dislike of George W. Bush and non-liberal policies jarred me out of the story, but if you overlook them, the story was fast-paced and a thought-provoking read.

    Also, some Christians may have a problem with the story, but my beliefs were perfectly embodied by Father Jerome. Ideas to mull over and make you question why some things are the way they are were littered throughout.

    As you can tell from my headline, I thought Crusader Gold was excellently written, but The Sanctuary for me was, in a word, boring. The Sign was most definitely a quality read, and for me, Raymond Khoury's best book to date.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2009

    Expected too much

    I did not enjoy this book as much as I had hoped. I suppose my expectations were too great since reading "The Last Templar".

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Politics

    I have never read one of his books but was inclined to write this review upon reading one of the other reviews. We all visit this website to find books we like and to write reviews, not to post our political views.

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 30, 2009

    I did not like this book.

    The author inserts his hatred for any political philosopy that is not his own. His venom makes Kieth Oberman sound like a reasoned pundit. This, coupled with a below average plot, makes this a book to avoid.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 5, 2010

    The Sign

    Non-stop action. Good author, good writing style, very exciting.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Exceptional Writing

    I really enjoyed this book. I kept me reading to constistently to get to the end and find out what happens. There were many characters in the book, but all were interesting and I could keep track of the all, not like other books that have to many characters I sometimes forget who is who. I would recommend this book. I have also read Raymond Khoury's book The Last Templar and have come to enjoy his writing style.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    disappointing

    It begins with the appearance of 'the sign' a mysterious glowing apparition in the Antarctica. I thought form that I would enjoy a great thriller, but this is not the case with this book. The plot is thin; the characters are not developed and the book is more or less and avenue in expressing the author's political and religious views. I expected more and got less. I do not recommend "The Sign" for anyone looking for a good thriller or mystery to read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Contemporary Thriller

    Very much like his other wonderful books, this story by Khoury is fascinating, exciting, and yet novel and contemporary. He is definitely thinking outside the box in the story, with twists and turns that keep you guessing and wanting to read ahead! The characters are believable and you care what happens to them. His descriptive style puts you in the thick of the action and keeps you interested for more! Highly recommended!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 101 Customer Reviews

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