Rob and Rich turn their attention to The Da Vinci Code. (more…)
Time to discuss the characters that just wind you up… (more…)
Which hidden gem did Kate and Rob discover after being recommended a book? (more…)
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Kate and Rob discuss drones, Harry Potter, book soundtracks and the best books of the year, as selected by Goodreads. Plus Rob announces the Sherlock Read-a-long! (more…)
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This week Kate and Rob discuss the best and worst books of the 21st Century, the Guardian First Book Award and what they are reading now. (more…)
Dan Brown’s latest Robert Langdon adventure arrives and has already set the charts alight. But will it leave you warm inside or burnt to a crisp? (more…)
Settle down for some reading this weekend with our selection of the best articles we enjoyed this past week. (more…)
THE VICTIM: On the steps of Santa Maria della Salute lies the body of a woman, wearing the robes of a Catholic priest. In the eyes of the Church, she is an abomination.
THE INVESTIGATOR: Captain Kat Tapo has matched the victim’s tattoo to graffiti in an abandoned asylum. Now she’s been ordered to close the case.
THE HACKER: Carnivia.com is a virtual Venice that holds the city’s secrets. Only its reclusive creator can help Kat unearth the shocking truth…
THE ABOMINATION has arrived. (more…)
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Rob and Kate discuss book covers, including the recent controversy over The Bell Jar, and what they now mean in an electronic world.
On the northern banks of the Vltava River an extraordinary event is taking place. Inside a private chapel a high-born Hungarian lady is being laid to rest. But not before her heart is removed from her body and she is buried beneath a layer of heavy stones – lest she rise again to prey upon her victims…
Holidaying in the world’s most beautiful city, Chris Bronson and Angela Lewis discover a desecrated tomb. Inside it is a female skeleton and a diary dating back hundreds of years. Written in Latin, it refers to a lost scroll that will provide an ‘answer’ to an ancient secret.
Soon corpses of young women, all killed in the same ritualistic manner, start appearing throughout the city. And when Angela disappears, Bronson knows that he must find her before she too is slaughtered.
But his hunt for Angela leads him to the Island of the Dead, and into a conspiracy more deadly than he could ever have imagined…
I picked up The Nosferatu Scroll with hopes for a fast-paced romp, maybe even a bit of so-bad-it’s-good cringey enjoyment, and, in general, I wasn’t disappointed. Yet again, I’ve managed to join a series at the fourth installment; Bronson and Lewis have already starred in three popular thrillers, involving policework but also historical/archeological investigation, courtesy of Angela Lewis. We’re reminded a number of times of her day-job at the British Museum in London.
The story was perhaps a little slow of kick off, at times reminding me more of a guide book of Venice, but that in itself was enjoyable – having visited the city myself, it was fun recalling the various locations, although perhaps they could have been introduced more subtly. However, once the momentum began to build, the story zipped along, aided by the teeny chapters and normally well-used cliffhangers. Occasionally, as with the location shots, these were a little clunky – there’s a question towards the end of the book which Bronson realises an Italian policeman didn’t ask that is made much too much of – but for the most part felt well dealt with, and in keeping with the thriller ‘formula’.
I will say that I won’t be recommending The Nosferatu Scroll to anyone for the beauty of its prose, but I don’t think anyone reads a book like this for delicate metaphors and lyrical description. This is a solid murderous thriller with a paranormal edge, providing a very different view of vampires to those twinkly Forks-dwellers from the Twilight franchise. If you enjoyed the oeuvre of Dan Brown but wished he would stop splurging out information at start of each chapter like some kind of verbal Wikipedia, this may well be for you. And, for a next step up in terms of enjoyable writing style, why not try Kate Mosse’s Labyrinth or Sepulchre, which merge historical fact with a hint of the supernatural and the beautiful landscape of the south of France.
The Nosferatu Scroll is published by Bantam Books.
The copy I’ve read is a BookCrossing book, and will be released back into the wilds of Colchester soon, if you fancy giving it a try.