Let us bring Hope...
Scott Mariani grew up in St Andrews, Scotland. He studied Modern Languages at Oxford and went on to work as a translator, a professional musician, a pistol shooting instructor and a freelance journalist before becoming a full-time writer. After spending several years in Italy and France, Scott discovered his secluded writer's haven in the wilds of west Wales, an 1830s country house complete with rambling woodland and a secret passage.
This is the 4th book in his Ben Hope series. The series has recently been optioned by Amber Entertainment.
Where there's Hope there's trouble... Ben Hope lives on the edge. A former elite member of the SAS, Ben is tortured by a tragedy, but is now living a peaceful life in rural France - until a phone call from an old army comrade turns his world upside down. Eminent Egyptologist Morgan Paxton has been brutally murdered while working on the mysterious 'Akhenaten Project' in Cairo, and Colonel Harry Paxton wants Ben to find his son's killer.
Ben is unable to refuse the request from the man who once saved his life - but when Harry asks him to avenge his son's death he's in dangerous territory. Made worse by the fact that he finds himself attracted to Zara Paxton, Harry's new bride. Carving through the seedy Cairo underworld, Ben soon realises that there was more to Paxton's research than meets the eye as he is plunged into one double-cross after another.
His mission leads him from Italy and Paris via Scotland to the banks of the Nile, and on to the war-torn Sudanese desert. At the end of the trail lies the ultimate treasure, hidden away by three rebel High Priests during the reign of the 'Heretic' Pharoah Akhenaten - a collection so valuable that some will stop at nothing to possess it...
This is a cracking book. I was a little put off by the "Dan Brown fans will love it" tag, since I'm definitely not a fan of Mr Brown. I'm with Stephen Fry on that subject. But The Heretic's Treasure is a nicely written action adventure with some ancient conspiracy thrown in. A bit of Indiana Jones here, a little Jason Bourne there, maybe even a touch of Jack Reacher. It holds together very well, and the way certain plot elements collide actually makes you smile, rather than being annoyed that you didn't spot a certain twist coming. It's a great book, and I'm already looking forward to the next one.
I know it's quite lazy to draw comparisons, but one of the easiest ways for people to decide if they want to read it is to find out which other authors this book resembles. I've already mentioned Dan Brown (and don't worry if you're not a fan), but you may also like this if you enjoy Wilbur Smith, Steve Berry, Clive Cussler, Robert Ludlum, Kate Mosse and Lee Child.
Looking forward to the next Ben Hope adventure!