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The Alexandria Link

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BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Steve Berry’s The Emperor’s Tomb and a Cotton Malone dossier. Cotton Malone retired from the high-risk world of elite operatives for the U.S. Justice Department to lead the low-key life of a rare-book dealer. But his quiet existence is shattered when he receives an anonymous e-mail: “You have something I want. You’ re the only p BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Steve Berry’s The Emperor’s Tomb and a Cotton Malone dossier. Cotton Malone retired from the high-risk world of elite operatives for the U.S. Justice Department to lead the low-key life of a rare-book dealer. But his quiet existence is shattered when he receives an anonymous e-mail: “You have something I want. You’ re the only person on earth who knows where to find it. Go get it. You have 72 hours. If I don’t hear from you, you will be childless.” His horrified ex-wife confirms that the threat is real: Their teenage son has been kidnapped. When Malone’s Copenhagen bookshop is burned to the ground, it becomes brutally clear that those responsible will stop at nothing to get what they want. And what they want is nothing less than the lost Library of Alexandria. A cradle of ideas–historical, philosophical, literary, scientific, and religious–the Library of Alexandria was unparalleled in the world. But fifteen hundred years ago, it vanished into the mists of myth and legend–its vast bounty of wisdom coveted ever since by scholars, fortune hunters, and those who believe its untold secrets hold the key to ultimate power. Now a cartel of wealthy international moguls, bent on altering the course of history, is desperate to breach the library’s hallowed halls–and only Malone possesses the information they need to succeed. At stake is an explosive ancient document with the potential not only to change the destiny of the Middle East but to shake the world’s three major religions to their very foundations. Pursued by a lethal mercenary, Malone crosses the globe in search of answers. His quest will lead him to England and Portugal, even to the highest levels of American government–and the shattering outcome, deep in the Sinai desert, will have worldwide repercussions.


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BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Steve Berry’s The Emperor’s Tomb and a Cotton Malone dossier. Cotton Malone retired from the high-risk world of elite operatives for the U.S. Justice Department to lead the low-key life of a rare-book dealer. But his quiet existence is shattered when he receives an anonymous e-mail: “You have something I want. You’ re the only p BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Steve Berry’s The Emperor’s Tomb and a Cotton Malone dossier. Cotton Malone retired from the high-risk world of elite operatives for the U.S. Justice Department to lead the low-key life of a rare-book dealer. But his quiet existence is shattered when he receives an anonymous e-mail: “You have something I want. You’ re the only person on earth who knows where to find it. Go get it. You have 72 hours. If I don’t hear from you, you will be childless.” His horrified ex-wife confirms that the threat is real: Their teenage son has been kidnapped. When Malone’s Copenhagen bookshop is burned to the ground, it becomes brutally clear that those responsible will stop at nothing to get what they want. And what they want is nothing less than the lost Library of Alexandria. A cradle of ideas–historical, philosophical, literary, scientific, and religious–the Library of Alexandria was unparalleled in the world. But fifteen hundred years ago, it vanished into the mists of myth and legend–its vast bounty of wisdom coveted ever since by scholars, fortune hunters, and those who believe its untold secrets hold the key to ultimate power. Now a cartel of wealthy international moguls, bent on altering the course of history, is desperate to breach the library’s hallowed halls–and only Malone possesses the information they need to succeed. At stake is an explosive ancient document with the potential not only to change the destiny of the Middle East but to shake the world’s three major religions to their very foundations. Pursued by a lethal mercenary, Malone crosses the globe in search of answers. His quest will lead him to England and Portugal, even to the highest levels of American government–and the shattering outcome, deep in the Sinai desert, will have worldwide repercussions.

30 review for The Alexandria Link

  1. 5 out of 5

    Josh

    Reading this book I felt a ton of conflicting thoughts and emotions. There were many things I really enjoyed about it, but there was also one large issue that really roiled my blood and is preventing me from giving this book anything higher than 2 stars. Let me first discuss what I liked. This story has three storylines moving parallel to each other. All,though, are connected and are many times propelling each of the three threads along. The big idea of this book is the search for the lost Libra Reading this book I felt a ton of conflicting thoughts and emotions. There were many things I really enjoyed about it, but there was also one large issue that really roiled my blood and is preventing me from giving this book anything higher than 2 stars. Let me first discuss what I liked. This story has three storylines moving parallel to each other. All,though, are connected and are many times propelling each of the three threads along. The big idea of this book is the search for the lost Library of Alexandria, which is a wonderful story idea. This is a huge collection of lost documents that would provide so much new knowledge to what the world already knows. The idea that it survived thousands of years after it was thought to have been destroyed is fantastic. I also liked how off-balance the story kept you. There is so much deception and government plotting and backstabbing, the reader never really knows who is being honest, trustworthy, or whose motives are understandable. Things are constantly shifting fast and furiously. The reader is never truly sure who the enemy is. A third thing I liked was the idea of this big, mysterious entity trying to affect world politics through manipulation, murders, and strife, especially in the Middle East, already a hotbed of issues. This brings me to what I detested about this novel. Hopefully, not giving anything away, Steve Berry posits that the Library of Alexandria will reveal that the present day location of Israel is wrong. That it in fact lies in an entirely different region all together. Wholly implausible, but Berry uses it to thrust his novel along. His pulls in the Saudis, Israelis, and Americans into this story. He says the Bible was mis-translated either intentionally or by a lack of understanding of languages. All fine for a fictional story. What really upset me is that the book is filled with page after page of anti-Semitism and anti-Israeli feelings. At first, I thought it was just me being overly sensitive, but I soon came across a number of other reviews elsewhere that started noting the same thing. After awhile, reading the story became quite distasteful. I guess Berry could hide behind his characters and say that he was only writing what his characters would feel, but the amount of it and the level of animosity shown is clearly coming from somewhere else. It was unnecessary and it doesn't really add anything to the book. If anything, it has seriously questioned if I want to continue to support this author by reading any of his future works. Normally a book like this would have received more than 2 stars, but I couldn't do that here. Not after what I felt were personal attacks against both Israel and Jewish people. I will be taking a break from Steve Berry for awhile and will make a decision in the future if I want to read anything more by him.

  2. 5 out of 5

    The Cats’ Mother

    I had not previously read anything by this author but got this from Book Club, and it’s been sitting on the shelf for a while. This is the second book in a long-running series about retired American super-agent Cotton Malone, who now runs a second hand bookshop in Copenhagen, but gets drawn into high-stakes treasure hunts with geo-political undertones, like a cross between Dan Brown and David Baldacci with a bit of Indiana Jones thrown in for good measure. I had no problems from not reading the I had not previously read anything by this author but got this from Book Club, and it’s been sitting on the shelf for a while. This is the second book in a long-running series about retired American super-agent Cotton Malone, who now runs a second hand bookshop in Copenhagen, but gets drawn into high-stakes treasure hunts with geo-political undertones, like a cross between Dan Brown and David Baldacci with a bit of Indiana Jones thrown in for good measure. I had no problems from not reading the first book. Cotton’s stroppy ex-wife Pam arrives in Denmark to tell him their teenage son Gary has been kidnapped. Shortly after telling him their demands, the baddies blow up his shop. Aided by his elderly friend Henrik, a billionaire businessman, Cotton must reveal the secret location of the titular Alexandria Link, who turns out to be a scholar of middle-eastern history who has a theory that could change the world: Israel is not where it’s supposed to be! A shadowy European cabal want to locate proof of this for their own ends, and American politicians, Mossad and Saudi Arabian agents all want to either find or destroy the evidence, which is hidden in the legendary Library of Alexandria... This was a drawn out but reasonably fast paced action thriller with a complicated twisty plot full of cross and double cross, gunfights and car chases, international travel and a tense climax inside the mysterious library. I couldn’t stand Pam, who bumbles about being self-righteous and difficult, and found Cotton rather a cold fish, but I enjoyed the adventure and would read more in this series. The author’s note at the end explains which bits are fact and which made up, which was useful. Other reviewers have complained about anti-semitism, but really there are goodies and baddies on all sides, as in real life, and if you abandon this part-way you’ll miss out on the reveals of who’s who and Israel really aren’t the enemy here.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Holland

    Read my full review at Tales Between the Pages I'm starting to think that Steve Berry is a megalomaniac. The more of his books that I read, the more I see his fascination with power and self-importance. I keep reading him because I expect his stories to get better. I like Cotton Malone, I really do. Thus, I go back. With that being said, The Alexandria Link sounded promising. I've always been fascinated by its secrets. Is it still out there? Did any of it survive? However, what I realized about ha Read my full review at Tales Between the Pages I'm starting to think that Steve Berry is a megalomaniac. The more of his books that I read, the more I see his fascination with power and self-importance. I keep reading him because I expect his stories to get better. I like Cotton Malone, I really do. Thus, I go back. With that being said, The Alexandria Link sounded promising. I've always been fascinated by its secrets. Is it still out there? Did any of it survive? However, what I realized about half way into the book is that it's just another one of Berry's attempts to destabilize religion. I normally wouldn't have a problem with this, but THREE out of the five books that I've read has tried to destabilize religion in some way, shape, or form. It's getting a bit old. I find myself saying, "Yeah, yeah, the Bible is flawed. We know that," a bit too much with his books ... So what did I like, you ask? There were moments where I forgot about all of the things I'm griping about and truly enjoyed reading. I like Stephanie and Cassiopeia's story line. I'm a sucker for a government thriller. In fact, I'd would have rather like Berry to go that route instead of the path he did choose. I also liked the riddles and the quests. Seeing Cotton try and figure out the hero's quest was pretty interesting. I did think they solved it a bit too quick. There weren't enough real obstacles in his way ... just men with guns. They're easily taken care of. Overall, the story is fun. It also gets you thinking. But, if you've read a lot of these "religion has secrets" novels like I have, you'll find The Alexandria Link formulaic and pretty unremarkable.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Brenda H

    The Alexandria Link is the 2nd book in the Cotton Malone series. After uncovering The Templar Legacy, Cotton - along with his friends Henrik and Stephanie, as well as his ex-wife Pam and son Gary – is on the hunt for the lost Library of Alexandria. Of course, what search for something of such historical significance would be complete without a couple of governments, a few bad guys and a cartel of wealthy international moguls chasing you throughout? Cotton and Pam are brought into the search after The Alexandria Link is the 2nd book in the Cotton Malone series. After uncovering The Templar Legacy, Cotton - along with his friends Henrik and Stephanie, as well as his ex-wife Pam and son Gary – is on the hunt for the lost Library of Alexandria. Of course, what search for something of such historical significance would be complete without a couple of governments, a few bad guys and a cartel of wealthy international moguls chasing you throughout? Cotton and Pam are brought into the search after their son is abducted. Cotton receives an email threatening his son’s life if information he has is not turned over in 72 hours. It is Cotton’s knowledge of an event 5 years ago that the kidnappers are after and are willing to do whatever they have to in order to get it from Cotton. I rated the 1st book in the series, The Templar Legacy, 3.75 stars. This book was a much better read. There was better action, a stronger plot and characters who were much more likable this time around. There was a good balance between historical fact and fiction. Rating: 4.5 stars

  5. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    4.5 Stars. This is a cracking good read. A good mixture of code breaking, a hunt for the Library of Alexandria, historical backdrop of the Old Testament and Middle East rivalries, as well as good interaction of the characters. If anything I think I enjoyed this more than the first one in the series. Will definitely be continuing in the series.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ashley Marie

    Clearly I'm a sucker for anything involving libraries and books. Not quite as engaging as the previous book, but this feels like it's going to be a middle-of-the-road or guilty pleasure kind of series (which I'm fine with, as long as I remember not to take anything too seriously). A few issues with some of the characters but overall decently enjoyable. Clearly I'm a sucker for anything involving libraries and books. Not quite as engaging as the previous book, but this feels like it's going to be a middle-of-the-road or guilty pleasure kind of series (which I'm fine with, as long as I remember not to take anything too seriously). A few issues with some of the characters but overall decently enjoyable.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jay Pruitt

    "Words are indeed the true weapons of mass destruction" ---The Alexandra Link--- I picked this book up mainly for my fascination with the Library of Alexandria. Unfortunately the novel didn't really spend that much on the Library itself. Rather, it was more of a follow-the-clues type of treasure hunt in search of one of the earliest known bibles, written prior to its subsequent Greek translations. This ancient text, if found, would spell great turmoil for the Middle East, and great power to t "Words are indeed the true weapons of mass destruction" ---The Alexandra Link--- I picked this book up mainly for my fascination with the Library of Alexandria. Unfortunately the novel didn't really spend that much on the Library itself. Rather, it was more of a follow-the-clues type of treasure hunt in search of one of the earliest known bibles, written prior to its subsequent Greek translations. This ancient text, if found, would spell great turmoil for the Middle East, and great power to the person or organization who has knowledge of its secrets. As always, this kind of story must include both good guys and bad guys who compete to be the first to unravel the mystery. And, of course, they all carry guns and are not afraid to use them. Steve Berry brings back most of the characters from the first book in the series, Templar Legacy. But he puts a little more meat on the bone in this novel, and we learn more about the family of the main character, Cotton Malone. We also learn much more about the twisted White House administration currently in power and the government bureaucrats who will stop at nothing to further their careers. I found The Alexandria Link to be more interesting than the previous series novel. The ending was gripping, and not at all predictable. Warning: those who might be offended by an author taking license with history, particularly of religious nature, should best steer clear of this book series. Both The Alexandria Link and The Templar Legacy took shots (equally, I might add) at Christians, Jews and Muslims. I try to ignore any personal offenses, and just sit back and enjoy the ride.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Ruth

    This is the second book in the Cotton Malone Series by Steve Berry. I have to say I enjoyed this book as much as the first. It was lovely returning to read all about charcters I'd read about in the first book. This is why I like series of books. I love to get to know the characters. Cotton Malone is again one of my favourite in the book and I really liked the involvement of his son Gary more. I wasn't so gone on the character of Pam Malone, Cotton's ex-wife, but the dis-like of her was set for me This is the second book in the Cotton Malone Series by Steve Berry. I have to say I enjoyed this book as much as the first. It was lovely returning to read all about charcters I'd read about in the first book. This is why I like series of books. I love to get to know the characters. Cotton Malone is again one of my favourite in the book and I really liked the involvement of his son Gary more. I wasn't so gone on the character of Pam Malone, Cotton's ex-wife, but the dis-like of her was set for me in the first book but by the end of this second book I did like her. I think though books should have you liking or disliking characters, I think indifference towards a character is one of the worst feelings to evoke in the reader I loved the fast pace of this story, there were no stopping and thinking moments and from opening to shuting the book it was all go go go. It kept me reading up late, not enough for an all night reading marathon but a little beyond bed time. I enjoyed how it hopped from the US to Britain, mainland Europe to Sinai and always at just the right moment that your appetite was wetted ready for you to return to the previous place and set of characters. The three different storylines were all easy to follow and did offer a twist or two that I hadn't expected, nothing worse than having it all figured out before the end. I thought the twist of the mistranslation of the Old Testament and the effects it could cause Christians, Muslims and Jews interesting. Yes you could compare this series so far to Dan Browns Da Vinci code and there are some similarities but I'm finding the Cotton Malone a better character than Robert Langford. I'm looking forward to reading the next in the series. But what I enjoyed most about the book was it was a piece of fiction set in real places and based on controversial and well argued material. Material that has no clear right or wrong, truth or fiction and this book just like the last leaves you with that question as you close the book....what if ?

  9. 4 out of 5

    Alan

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Okay, another Steve Berry book that gives mixed signals. Just like the Dan Brown stuff, he tries to discredit everything you think that you know about religion. In this one, he has St. Jerome intentionally manipulating the Old and New Testaments. He also has the Old Testament lands actually in Asia and says that no ancient texts really exists of any biblical writings before 900 A.D.(or C.E., if you prefer). He also states that there is not archeaological evidence that Isreal is really where any Okay, another Steve Berry book that gives mixed signals. Just like the Dan Brown stuff, he tries to discredit everything you think that you know about religion. In this one, he has St. Jerome intentionally manipulating the Old and New Testaments. He also has the Old Testament lands actually in Asia and says that no ancient texts really exists of any biblical writings before 900 A.D.(or C.E., if you prefer). He also states that there is not archeaological evidence that Isreal is really where any of the bible took place. He seems to forget all about the Dead Sea Scrolls (which contain parts of every Old Testament book but Esther), Hadrian's wall, the tunnels and wells beneath Jerusalem, and everything else that is chronicled nicely in Biblical Archeaology Review in every issue. Berry is a great story teller and needs to stick to the story and stop trying to tear down religion. In this book, he goes after Christians, Jews, and Moslems with great fury (Jews being his greatest target).

  10. 4 out of 5

    Meagan Boeff

    I read this book expecting it to be poorly executed and I was still pretty disappointed. The plot is what you expect, international espionage surrounding the search for the lost Library of Alexandria. But it was just barely interesting enough to finish. The plot starts pretty well, drags on a bit in the middle and ends very poorly. The characters are mere caricatures; heavy-handed, hardly developed and with some of the poorest name choices imaginable. For example, the lead character is named "Cot I read this book expecting it to be poorly executed and I was still pretty disappointed. The plot is what you expect, international espionage surrounding the search for the lost Library of Alexandria. But it was just barely interesting enough to finish. The plot starts pretty well, drags on a bit in the middle and ends very poorly. The characters are mere caricatures; heavy-handed, hardly developed and with some of the poorest name choices imaginable. For example, the lead character is named "Cotton Malone" while the sexy, rich girl/amateur spy is named "Cassiopeia Vitt". And those are only two names. By the final 1/4 of the book I was sick to death of reading all those dumb names. Berry also treads on many hot topics in this story with all the grace of a giant bear. There's Israel/Palestine relations, the three major religions (Christianity, Islam and Judiasm), shadow organizations, corrupt US officials and then there's the annoying addition of Cotton's ex-wife. Rather than focus on one or two topics solidly he merely sketches each. The affect is that of a book that started out with a good basic idea but was too hastily written to become well conceived.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Slayermel

    This book was action packed right from the get go, I had a really hard time putting it down. I found the concept of the Old Testament being mistranslated from it's original Hebrew and all the problems this would cause in the world between the Muslims, Christians and Jews very interesting and it made for a great story. I loved how Steve Berry weaved in real places, and historical events with his fictional story. I found the Characters in the story quite likable as well. The Tension between Cotton This book was action packed right from the get go, I had a really hard time putting it down. I found the concept of the Old Testament being mistranslated from it's original Hebrew and all the problems this would cause in the world between the Muslims, Christians and Jews very interesting and it made for a great story. I loved how Steve Berry weaved in real places, and historical events with his fictional story. I found the Characters in the story quite likable as well. The Tension between Cotton and Pam was believable as where Cotton's friendships with Haddad and Thorvaldsen. My brain was spinning a bit by the end trying to figure out who was double crossing who within the American Government though, but I enjoyed every minute.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Corky

    OK so I still like Da Vinci Code readalikes. Steve Berry is one of the better authors in this particular market. The research is good and the historical references and links to Old World Egyopt made it particularly interesting to me.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    Reading this book is like reading a graphic novel that has no art. Tiny, short sentences. Chapters generally three pages long. Jumping from setting to setting. Denmark, Washington, London, Vienna. The plot is Indiana Jones meets the X Files. Hilarious conspiracy theory stuff, and a diabolical henchman who — can you believe it! — shoots just about everybody as part of his scheme. Informants get shot in broad daylight in famous landmarks. Just like in the movies! Except that without the special eff Reading this book is like reading a graphic novel that has no art. Tiny, short sentences. Chapters generally three pages long. Jumping from setting to setting. Denmark, Washington, London, Vienna. The plot is Indiana Jones meets the X Files. Hilarious conspiracy theory stuff, and a diabolical henchman who — can you believe it! — shoots just about everybody as part of his scheme. Informants get shot in broad daylight in famous landmarks. Just like in the movies! Except that without the special effects and scenery, the terrible dialogue and convoluted plot seem all the more ridiculous. I'm on page 205, and I think I'm going to stop now. Whatever enjoyment I'm still getting is coming from mocking the author. There's an unintentional laugh on every page! Here's a sample, from chapter 8: "He'd used too many aliases to remember them all. Five years he'd been gone to ground and not a word from anyone. In one respect, that was good. In another, the silence racked his nerves. Thank God only one man knew he was alive, and he trust that person implicitly." Dialogue from chapter 11: "What are we doing?" Pam asked. "The only thing we can do." "Why don't you just give them what they want?" "It's not that simple." "Sure it is." He kept his gaze ahead. "Thanks for the advice." "You're an ass." "I love you, too." But this is a New York Times Bestselling author, according to the cover. His name is printed in bigger type than the title. It might make a decent movie, but it's a laughably awful book.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Linda Isakson

    Former secret service agent, Cotton Malone, becomes embroiled in another post-retirement situation after his son is kidnapped and his rare book store is burned. The head of the Order of the Golden Fleece, a network of politically powerful European business men and women, seeks the lost library of Alexandria in hopes of finding information that could destabilize the Middle East and create more economic power for the Order. Many years prior, Cotton helped to protect and hide a man, called the Alex Former secret service agent, Cotton Malone, becomes embroiled in another post-retirement situation after his son is kidnapped and his rare book store is burned. The head of the Order of the Golden Fleece, a network of politically powerful European business men and women, seeks the lost library of Alexandria in hopes of finding information that could destabilize the Middle East and create more economic power for the Order. Many years prior, Cotton helped to protect and hide a man, called the Alexandria link, who was one of the few men on earth with the knowledge of the lost library's whereabouts. To force Cotton in revealing his knowledge of the links hiding place, the head of the Order hires an assassin to kidnap Cotton's son and create a scenario where Cotton is forced to search for the library himself. However, the Israelis and the Muslims do not want the information the library potentially contains to be made public knowledge so they, naturally, send agents to discourage Cotton's quest. This next chapter in the Cotton Malone series is much better and less predictable than the first book "The Templar Legacy", which was too reminiscent of "The Da Vinci Code". I enjoyed the non-stop action and the constant references to historical events, dates, locations, people and the various interpretations of historical texts. A recommended read.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Frederick Masterman

    The Alexandria Link has much in common with Dan Brown's DaVinci Code, and that is not meant as a negative criticism. In both there is a search for a mysterious treasure by a male and female protagonist, who cleverly unravel the clues in many places as to where the prize is hidden. In both the protagonists are pursued by ruthless villains intent on stopping them before they reach the goal. The pace is non-stop in each book, and there are sufficient twists and turns to keep the reader attentive to The Alexandria Link has much in common with Dan Brown's DaVinci Code, and that is not meant as a negative criticism. In both there is a search for a mysterious treasure by a male and female protagonist, who cleverly unravel the clues in many places as to where the prize is hidden. In both the protagonists are pursued by ruthless villains intent on stopping them before they reach the goal. The pace is non-stop in each book, and there are sufficient twists and turns to keep the reader attentive to the story flow. A refreshing new twist in the Link is to portray the goal as something to alter world politics, not the pious sentiments of a portion of one religion as in the Code. I was entertained by Berry's book, but I have a few serious doubts about the accuracy of his summary of the terrible flaws in Biblical translation (having had a thorough training in the field myself). These subtleties will not faze the general reader, although I find misinformation annoying wherever it poses as absolute truth (and the Code was full of such errors). Treasure hunts will probably always pique the interest of many, and the bigger the treasure the more exciting the hunt. But the theme is getting old, and I hope The Alexandria Link will conclude the current trend to exploit the idea.

  16. 5 out of 5

    itchy

    guy threw his ex out a plane! how sick is that? p47: a third shot and durant collapsed to the floor. malone whirled. a man stood twenty feet away, holding a glock. malone stuffed his right arm under his jacket to find his own weapon. "no need," the man calmly said, and he tossed the gun. malone caught it. he gripped the pistol's stock, finger on the trigger, aimed, and fired. only a click came in response. his finger worked the trigger. more clicks. p74: his left hand gripped the knob, his right held the guy threw his ex out a plane! how sick is that? p47: a third shot and durant collapsed to the floor. malone whirled. a man stood twenty feet away, holding a glock. malone stuffed his right arm under his jacket to find his own weapon. "no need," the man calmly said, and he tossed the gun. malone caught it. he gripped the pistol's stock, finger on the trigger, aimed, and fired. only a click came in response. his finger worked the trigger. more clicks. p74: his left hand gripped the knob, his right held the gun, finger on the trigger. p80: sbre braked at the gate and wound down the driver's-side window. p149: he grabbed the gadget and snapped it into an empty usb port. p340: he'd also provided two secret service revolvers and spare magazines.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Eadie

    This is book 2 of The Cotton Malone series and I would have to say that it is my favorite. This book had it all - history mixed with religion and suspense. It was a fast moving plot with great characters and never a dull moment that kept the pages turning fast. I loved the short chapters with lots of cliffhangers that Steve Berry does so masterfully. Lots of twists and turns with surprises in the end make for very adventurous read. I'm now looking forward to the next Cotton Malone read and I wou This is book 2 of The Cotton Malone series and I would have to say that it is my favorite. This book had it all - history mixed with religion and suspense. It was a fast moving plot with great characters and never a dull moment that kept the pages turning fast. I loved the short chapters with lots of cliffhangers that Steve Berry does so masterfully. Lots of twists and turns with surprises in the end make for very adventurous read. I'm now looking forward to the next Cotton Malone read and I would highly recommend this series to those who love fast-paced adventure with history and religion mixed in. 4.5 stars

  18. 5 out of 5

    Mike French

    Another very enjoyable read in the Cotton Malone series. Lots of twists and turns that kept my attention all the way to the end. Recommend to all Thriller readers! I am looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Leslie Crawley

    This took me a while to get through, partly because I actually have to work and spend time with my family (

  20. 5 out of 5

    Matt Halpern

    Very well written as usual. This author really has a knack for keeping the reader hooked on the story.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ivi Oltovska

    steve berry is the best i love this book a good thriller indeed

  22. 5 out of 5

    Steven Z.

    What if the biblical basis for the Israeli state was incorrect? What if the real evidence for the creation of the Jewish state was in western Saudi Arabia? What if the ancient translations that led to the writing of the Old Testament from old Hebrew and Greek were open to an interpretation that could destabilize both Israel and Saudi Arabia and reorient the geopolitics of the Middle East? Intertwine the writings of St. Augustine and St. Jerome; add some nefarious characters that would stand to e What if the biblical basis for the Israeli state was incorrect? What if the real evidence for the creation of the Jewish state was in western Saudi Arabia? What if the ancient translations that led to the writing of the Old Testament from old Hebrew and Greek were open to an interpretation that could destabilize both Israel and Saudi Arabia and reorient the geopolitics of the Middle East? Intertwine the writings of St. Augustine and St. Jerome; add some nefarious characters that would stand to enhance their power and monetary profit, and sprinkle in American politics and you have the basic premise of Steve Berry’s novel, THE ALEXANDRIA LINK. The book is part of Berry’s series featuring Cotton Malone, a retired member of the U.S. Justice Department’s elite Magellan Billet who lives in Copenhagen and operates a bookstore. The story begins with a scene from April, 1948, when the British gave up their mandate over Palestine realizing that they no longer have the power to broker a peace between the Arabs and Jews. We meet George Haddad, a nineteen year old Palestinian who grows frustrated interrogating a man who had come to speak with his father. The man came with ideas pertaining to a peace settlement, but two weeks before the man’s visit his father had been killed. Haddad was in no mood to chat with another peace messenger in the midst of the nakba, “the catastrophe,” and executed his prisoner. The novel quickly shifts to contemporary Copenhagen where Cotton Malone is confronted by his estranged wife, Pam informing him that their son Gary was kidnapped. The ransom for Gary’s release is the “Alexandria Link,” something only Malone and a few others have knowledge of. The result is a bombing of Malone’s bookstore and violent confrontation that leads to Gary’s release. Despite this release the plot begins to further evolve as Malone realizes that he must uncover the “Alexandria Link,” which is the location of an ancient Egyptian library supposedly located in Alexandria. According to George Haddad, now a grown man, a philosopher and theologian, within the library lays evidence that God’s covenant with Israel delineated in the Bible may be mistaken. The Israeli and Saudi governments do not want this information to become public knowledge and their security services work to block any progress in discovering the library and its artifacts. In the United States the Vice President is allied with a European syndicate, called the Order of the Golden Fleece, whose chair, Alfred Hermann is determined to destabilize the Mideast for the economic and political benefit of his cabal. The plot brings Malone from Copenhagen, to London, Lisbon, the Sinai with his new companion his ex-wife Pam. Characters from previous novels have major roles; Henrik Thorvaldsen, a Jewish Danish billionaire and close friend of Malone; Stephanie Nelle his former boss in the Justice Department; and Cassiopeia Vitt, an art historian and well trained in the military arts. New additions include the previously mentioned Alfred Hermann; Dominick Sabre, an operative hired by Hermann who later in the book goes by the alias James McCollum who has his own agenda when it comes to the “Alexandria Link;” Larry Daley, a presidential advisor with his own plans; Attorney-General Brent Green who seems to support a number of positions; and President Robert Edward Daniels, Jr. As with all of Berry’s novels in the Malone series the reader must pay careful attention as the author integrates legitimate, theoretical, and counter-factual history with contemporary events and politics. Historical figures permeate the narrative as they are interwoven to support or discredit what the fictional characters deem important. The plot line concerns power politics and wealth but Berry tries to base much of his action on uncovering “knowledge” as a weapon in the geopolitics of the Middle East. In this case the knowledge rests on the concept that God’s promise to Abraham for a Jewish homeland in Canaan as written in the Torah is not accurate, thereby debunking the major argument in the Jewish religion for Israel’s existence. As the story progresses we witness Mossad agents enter and leave. Further an assassination plot to remove the President of the United States seems to be on the table. A proposed deal between al-Qaeda and elements in Washington is in place. Saudi assassins seem to appear everywhere. There is even an interesting visit by David Ben-Gurion to the Alexandria library and a host of other interesting historical occurrences that may or may not have ever occurred. Thankfully Berry provides an addendum at the end of the book to inform the reader as to what he has made up and what actually took place. But what cannot be denied is that he has chosen a topic that has tremendous relevance to current geopolitics in the Middle East. There is no doubt that the books opening scene displaying the hatred between Palestinians and Jews still remains in place today. All we have to do is point to the events of last summer between Israel and Hamas. Though a very good yarn, Berry does provide some important contemporary issues to contemplate. Berry has written numerous historical novels and though I have only read three, I look forward to continuing to explore his Cotton Malone series as they are interesting, educational, and very entertaining.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Soo

    Notes: (665th Book Read in 2020) Hahahahah - Good character developments. - A little heavy on religious history but that seems to be normal for the series. Not news to me but perhaps it is for those who do not study religions. - The political stuff was predictable & yawn worthy.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Cherie

    It was nice to meet Cotton again. What a wild ride back and forth across the globe. I am really looking forward to the next in the series now!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Janice

    The first two books in this series do not have much character development, but there is lots of fast-paced action. And there are some aspects of the relationships Cotton Malone has with both his ex-wife and his son that are explored. All that was enough to keep me reading, but what I enjoy most about these books is the amount of research this author has done. He obviously did a lot of traveling, across the globe, as he investigated how the Old Testament was written, explored the existence now or The first two books in this series do not have much character development, but there is lots of fast-paced action. And there are some aspects of the relationships Cotton Malone has with both his ex-wife and his son that are explored. All that was enough to keep me reading, but what I enjoy most about these books is the amount of research this author has done. He obviously did a lot of traveling, across the globe, as he investigated how the Old Testament was written, explored the existence now or in the past, of various documents that expose inconsistencies, and efforts to change certain segments, for political or religious reasons. An informative interview with the author was included at the end, that shed light on what in his novel was historically accurate, and what was created for his story. All in all, an enjoyable read.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Gerald

    I'm a fan of Alexandrian history, and also of spy novels. So you'd think I'd love this. But when this author (speaking through a character) brags that the Iraq war will bring stable democracy to the Middle East, I stopped reading. Gerald. Boychik Lit I'm a fan of Alexandrian history, and also of spy novels. So you'd think I'd love this. But when this author (speaking through a character) brags that the Iraq war will bring stable democracy to the Middle East, I stopped reading. Gerald. Boychik Lit

  27. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Holy Moly!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    intrigue, conspiracy, greed, politics, religion history of religion, secret societies, ancient library This isn't a title that I'd choose, but a neighbor insisted I read it because of the descriptions of the ancient library of Alexandria in Egypt. She reassured me that there wasn't much violence, which in itself says something about the book. There is violence. Lots of point-blank murders. So many that I lost count. But I never felt the suspense that I usually feel when reading books of this natu intrigue, conspiracy, greed, politics, religion history of religion, secret societies, ancient library This isn't a title that I'd choose, but a neighbor insisted I read it because of the descriptions of the ancient library of Alexandria in Egypt. She reassured me that there wasn't much violence, which in itself says something about the book. There is violence. Lots of point-blank murders. So many that I lost count. But I never felt the suspense that I usually feel when reading books of this nature. I think that's because the murders were so 'routine.' I suspect my neighbor felt the same way since she remembered the book as focusing on ancient history ... which is also why she thought I'd like it. And she was right. I did like the historical basis, and I did appreciate the author's note at the end. e.g., p 107 The Ptolemies were intellectuals. Ptolemy I was a historian. Ptolemy II a zoologist. Ptolemy III a patron of literature. Ptolemy IV a playwright. Each chose leading scholars and scientists as tutors for his children and encouraged great minds to live in Alexandria. Note: No cussing! Much appreciated. I don't like the liberal use of expletives that I associate with books of this type. Also, I didn't keep track of all of the characters. There were just too many of them.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sammy

    I think this another one of those many books that has been riding on the coattails of The Da Vinci Code. Mind you, it's just the latest in an apparant series of book following Cotton Malone's adventures. Perhaps that's why I never really got all that involved in the book was because I had never really gotten to know the characters and there were just so many that I was expected to. Even so, with the plot jumping to three different places and three seperate storylines (for the most part until they I think this another one of those many books that has been riding on the coattails of The Da Vinci Code. Mind you, it's just the latest in an apparant series of book following Cotton Malone's adventures. Perhaps that's why I never really got all that involved in the book was because I had never really gotten to know the characters and there were just so many that I was expected to. Even so, with the plot jumping to three different places and three seperate storylines (for the most part until they join together at the end) I was just pulled in too many directions. I didn't know who I really wanted to follow, root for, or trust. Probably the most annoying aspect of this book was Pam. She just pissed me off. She never listened to Malone, thus majorly messing up plans and almost getting herself (and others) killed. In a way I wish she was killed that way she would have been out of our hair. The last quarter of the book does make up for all the annoyances. The Library of Alexandria has always been something that fascinated me. A place with all old world knowledge stored up and lost. What we could have learned had we not lost the library, where we could be right now, it's amazing to think about. It was the main reason I wanted to read this book and it's the main reason I kept reading. I was extremely pleased they did focus on the library at the end, and we actually got to see it! Still... okay book, just too much. I'm sure for those following the adventures of Cotton Malone the book will be so much more worthwhile. But for those of you who plan on making the mistake I made and thinking this book would mainly address the lost library, you're wrong. Maybe read a couple of the books that come before this, it might make the read more enjoyable.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Olivermagnus

    Cotton Malone's ex-wife Pam surprises him with the news that his 15-year-old son, Gary, has been kidnapped. The only way they will release Gary is if Malone tells them where he's hidden George Haddad, the man who might know where to find the lost Library of Alexandria. The deadly kidnapper follows Malone and Pam, hoping to find the library. Meanwhile, a mysterious group of world leaders and financiers known as the Order of the Golden Fleece try to manipulate the Alexandria knowledge to gain more Cotton Malone's ex-wife Pam surprises him with the news that his 15-year-old son, Gary, has been kidnapped. The only way they will release Gary is if Malone tells them where he's hidden George Haddad, the man who might know where to find the lost Library of Alexandria. The deadly kidnapper follows Malone and Pam, hoping to find the library. Meanwhile, a mysterious group of world leaders and financiers known as the Order of the Golden Fleece try to manipulate the Alexandria knowledge to gain more power and wealth for themselves. Back in Washington DC, colleagues of Malone's are facing their own threats, many which seem to be coming from America's highest political offices. Mixed into the search for the Library is a theory that involves whether the accepted translations of the Old and New Testaments are correct. Did the story of the Bible really take place in Saudi Arabia instead of Palestine? If this theory can be proven it could upset the current world order and disrupt the global balance of power. The author incorporates fascinating tidbits of history to create stories that are well-constructed page-turners. You don't need to know too much history to become intrigued with the fascinating historical trivia and mysteries of the past. There's lots of action and an engaging plot. It was difficult to put the book down once I got involved in the story. I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

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