Synopses & Reviews
A pulse-pounding, roller coaster of an adventure.
When the body of hotel owner Jan Weiss is discovered at Malqata, an archeological site on the west bank of the Nile, it looks like a routine investigation for Inspector Yusuf Khalifa of the Luxor police. But the more the detective finds out about Weiss, the more he is reminded of the brutal killing of an Israeli woman at Karnak years ago a murder for which he has always suspected the wrong man had been convicted. Despite opposition from his superiors and his own misgivings about working with the Israelis, Khalifa re-opens the case and teams up with hard-nosed Jerusalem detective Arieh Ben Roi.
At the same time journalist Eva Town receives an anonymous letter at her Jerusalem home. It requests her help in contacting Al-Mulassam (The Veiled One), a Palestinian extremist leader she has recently interviewed; in return it offers her the scoop of a lifetime.
Against a backdrop of escalating violence between Israelis and Palestinians, Eva follows up the cryptic letter while Khalifa and Arieh slowly uncover the unpleasant truth about Jan Weiss. Their investigations intertwine as they all get further in to the web of duplicity and intrigue that has at its center an ancient artifact of such potent symbolism that it could plunge the Middle East into an all-out war.
"The story has enough energy and action to carry it past a few logical gaps." Library Journal
"A compulsively good read with surprising depth." Booklist
"Clunky prose swaddles a frantic but unexceptional plot." Kirkus Reviews
Jerusalem, 70 AD. As the legions of Rome besiege the Holy Temple, a boy is given a secret that he must guard with his life...Southern Germany, December 1944. Six emaciated prisoners drag a mysterious crate deep into a disused mine. They too give their lives to keep the secret safe: murdered by their Nazi guards...Egypt, Valley of the Kings, the present day. A body is found amongst some ruins. It appears to be an open-and-shut case for Inspector Yusuf Khalifa of the Luxor police. But what begins as a routine investigation rapidly turns out to be the most trying case of his career. Forced into an uneasy alliance with Arieh Ben-Roi, a hard-drinking Jerusalem detective, and Layla al-Madani, a daring Palestinian journalist, Khalifa enters a murky, murderous world of greed, duplicity, intrigue and revenge as he goes in search of an extraordinary long-lost artifact that could, in the wrong hands, turn the Middle East into a blood bath. Traveling from ancient Jerusalem to contemporary Egypt, and involving Cathar heretics, coded medieval manuscripts, and hidden Nazi treasures, The Last Secret of the Temple is an absorbing thriller set against the tumultuous politics of the present-day Middle East.
In the year 70 AD, as the Romans sacked and destroyed the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, a young Jewish boy was hidden away and chosen as the guardian of a great secret. For seventy generations this secret remained safeguarded. But in present day Israel, a Jewish radical threatens to reveal this hidden truth and use it to rend apart the fragile Middle Eastand only an unlikely duo of hardened detectives of very different origins and a young, enterprising Palestinian journalist can unite to ward off disaster.
A relentless and fast-paced thriller that moves from Egypt to Jerusalem to the Sinai Desert, thatspans the millennia and involves Cathar heretics, Nazi prisoners, and modern-day suicide bombers, Paul Sussmans The Last Secret of the Temple is a thrilling, roller-coaster adventure that brilliantly examines the participants on both sides of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Timely, important, and completely absorbing, it marks Paul Sussman as one of todays great thriller writers.
About the Author
Paul Sussman's two great passions are writing and archaeology. He fulfills the former by working as a freelance journalist and the latter by spending two months a year excavating in Egypt. His first novel was The Lost Army of Cambyses. He lives with his wife in London.