Emily Hudson is a renowned archaeologist who travels the world to save priceless artifacts from theft or destruction. Her best friend and partner, Joel Levy, is always at her side--until one day, when her entire crew comes under attack. Joel and Emily are held hostage by a sadistic captor who is determined to find the missing link to a legendary treasure. For weeks they struggle to survive against terrifying odds, pushed to their limits--and beyond...
John Garrett has worked for the CIA, British intelligence, and whoever else was willing to pay for his services. This time, a Washington operative hands him what at first appears to be just another assignment: to track down, and save, Emily and Joel. But it quickly becomes much more, especially when Garrett finds himself drawn to someone as dauntless and bent on revenge as Emily. Soon, they're catapulted into an astonishing adventure in which nothing--and no one--is what it seems. And lives hang in the balance as one man and one woman unravel the explosive truth behind a conspiracy hidden for generations.
An especially far-fetched plot and unconvincing dialogue mar this romantic thriller, set primarily in Afghanistan and Russia, from bestseller Johansen (Dark Summer). Emily Hudson, a U.N. artifacts expert, is trying to track down a vicious criminal who may have stolen Zelov's hammer. Hidden inside the old mallet is a treasure map to the long-lost riches of Russia's assassinated Romanov family. Helping Hudson is a rough-and-ready CIA tracker, whose physical charms prove irresistible to the usually proud and independent Hudson. As is Johansen's wont, the romance competes head-to-head with the chase, with annoying effect. Love scenes and hokey romantic dialogue closely follow or precede those of perilous action. On one page, Hudson will be steely and adept, then, on the next, fragile and feeble. By the time the plot hits the homestretch, many readers will have a hard time taking it seriously. 650,000 first printing. (Apr.)
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St. Martin's Press
October 18, 2009
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