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The Venetian Betrayal: A Novelby Steve Berry
Synopses & Reviews
In 323 B.C.E, having conquered Persia, Alexander the Great set his sights on Arabia, then suddenly succumbed to a strange fever. Locating his final resting place — unknown to this day — remains a tantalizing goal for both archaeologists and treasure hunters. Now the quest for this coveted prize is about to heat up. And Cotton Malone —former U.S. Justice Department agent turned rare-book dealer — will be drawn into an intense geopolitical chess game.
After narrowly escaping incineration in a devastating fire that consumes a Danish museum, Cotton learns from his friend, the beguiling adventurer Cassiopeia Vitt, that the blaze was neither an accident nor an isolated incident. As part of campaign of arson intended to mask a far more diabolical design, buildings across Europe are being devoured by infernos of unnatural strength.
And from the ashes of the U.S.S.R., a new nation has arisen: Former Soviet republics have consolidated into the Central Asian Federation. At its helm is Supreme Minister Irina Zovastina, a cunning despot with a talent for politics, a taste for blood sport, and the single-minded desire to surpass Alexander the Great as history's ultimate conqueror.
Backed by a secret cabal of powerbrokers, the Federation has amassed a harrowing arsenal of biological weapons. Equipped with the hellish power to decimate other nations at will, only one thing keeps Zovastina from setting in motion her death march of domination: a miraculous healing serum, kept secret by an ancient puzzle and buried with the mummified remains of Alexander the Great — in a tomb lost to the ages for more than 1,500 years.
Together, Cotton and Cassiopeia must outrun and outthink the forces allied against them. Their perilous quest will take them to the shores of Denmark, deep into the venerated monuments of Venice, and finally high inside the desolate Pamir mountains of Central Asia to unravel a riddle whose solution could destroy or save millions of people — depending on who finds the lost tomb first.
"In bestseller Berry's predictable third novel to feature Cotton Malone (after The Alexandria Link and The Templar Legacy), Malone takes on another villain bent on world domination, Irina Zovastina, supreme minister of the Central Asian Federation, who's plotting to use a bioweapon to destroy Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Malone races around the globe trying to find the means to foil the minister, aided by longtime allies Cassiopeia Vitt, an enigmatic and deadly operative, and his former Justice Department boss, Stephanie Nelle. The answer may lie buried with Alexander the Great's remains. Both the good and the bad guys let their opponents live in circumstances that make no sense except to prolong the plot, and the genuine mysteries surrounding the death of Alexander the Great receive short shrift. Despite some pedestrian prose ('He shook his head. Choices. Everybody made them'), this international yarn, full of shoot-outs and explosions, won't disappoint fans of Berry's previous action-packed thrillers." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Massive plot twists and a relentless narrative pace result in another success from Berry." Library Journal
"Cardboard characters and over-the-top plotting in some fairly spectacular scenery." Kirkus Reviews
"Steve Berry...writes big, blubbery potboilers. But as he proves once again in The Venetian Betrayal, he has a genuine feel for the factual gaps that give history its tantalizing air of the unknown." Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review
About the Author
Steve Berry is the New York Times bestselling author of The Alexandria Link, The Templar Legacy, The Third Secret, The Romanov Prophecy, and The Amber Room. His books have been translated into thirty-eight languages and sold in forty-two countries. A lawyer who has traveled extensively throughout Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Russia, he lives on the Georgia coast. He is currently at work on his next novel.
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