Synopses & Reviews
It is 1943 and the world is at war. Archaeologist Lily Sampson has been sent to Trans-Jordan, by the OSS, along with Gideon Weil, the famous director of the American School of Archeology in Jerusalem. As part of their survey, they roam the beautiful, silent, Trans-Jordanian desert where the indelible presence of Lawrence of Arabia is still lingers, and where the ancient Nabateans once ruled an empire from their capital in Petra. Soon Lily and Gideon are stranded in the Wadi Rum, and their Bedouin guide is murdered. When Gideon is accused of the crime, Lily must clear him of the accusation.
Lily discovers that two oil pipelines run from Iraq through the desert to the ports on Mediterranean, one through one through Trans-Jordan that supplies the Allies, the other through Syria that supplies the Nazis. Syrians and Vichy French are raiding across the border, threatening to destroy the Trans-Jordan pipeline. Lily discovers their real mission is to help safeguard the Trans-Jordan pipeline and to prevent oil from reaching the Nazis through Syria. At the same time Lily learns of a Nazi plot to kidnap and kill the eight-year old King Faisal of Iraq and take over Iraq.
Now, Lily and Gideon must act to protect the Trans-Jordan pipeline, sabotage the Syrian line, and rescue Faisal to prevent the Nazi takeover of Iraq.
“the issues she raises about Western versus Islamic cultural values couldn't be more timely.”
–Publishers Weekly of The Torch of Tangier
“Baron wrote her first novel about Lily Sampson (A Fly Has a Hundred Eyes) when she was 76 years old. She returns here with a story that is just as riveting and suspenseful.” –Library Journal of The Torch of Tangier
“Those who like their thrillers steeped in exotic climes will find intriguing political and cultural conflict aplenty as Lily becomes the lynchpin for a vital Allied operation” --Booklist of The Torch of Tangier
About the Author
Aileen Baron has a Ph.D. in archaeology and taught for twenty years in the Department of Anthropology at California State University, Fullerton. Her many years of archaeological fieldwork in the Middle East, include a year at the American School of Oriental Research in Jerusalem as an NEH scholar, and director of the overseas campus of California State Universities at the Hebrew University. Her residence in Switzerland, the hub of the antiquities trade, and her experience in museums has given her an insight into the underside of the trade in ancient art, the focus of her latest mystery, The Gold Of Thrace.
Her first novel, A Fly Has A Hundred Eyes, about the murder of a British archaeologist in 1938 in British mandated Palestine, won first place in the mystery category at both the Pikes Peak Writers conference and the SouthWest Writers Conference. The second novel in the Lily Sampson series, The Torch Of Tangier, takes place in Morocco during WW II, when Lily is recruited into the OSS to work on the preparations for the Allied invasion of North Africa, Operation Torch.