Author: Thomas K. Carpenter
Publisher: Black Moon Books
Overall Rating: 5.0 out of 5.0 Stars
The mystery of who truly started the fires that destroyed the Great Library of Alexandria has haunted the people of the world for almost a century by the time Heron of Alexandria is commissioned by an unknown patron to unravel the mystery. Burdened by debt, mired in controversy, seemingly cursed by the gods, and keeping secrets that would warrant death by the morning light, Heron struggles to uncover the truth of the ancient disaster. Aided and frustrated by a learned barbarian from the north who demands Heron’s skill and attention to create the machinations he needs to win and regain his honor.
The details, creativity and historical feel of the Fires of Alexandria are intoxicatingly beautiful. Not only does the author weave a powerful tale of intrigue and suspense, but he manages to not simply drop it into a historical setting, but marry it into the daily life of the historical world of his choosing. He has obviously researched the world of ancient Alexandria, and his characters, their motivations, their fears, and daily lives are reflected in his words.
In addition to the setting, the plot is a classic mystery, one where the reader is provided with ample clues as to the solution, hidden among the pages. Nothing is too easily spelled out, and the author seems to be one of those rare people who can both hide the truth in plain sight, and then reveal it to the stunned reader without making the reader feel foolish. The truth isn’t revealed by a narrator patronizing the reader with a long diatribe, but rather through subtle conversations, actions, and the emotions of the characters.
If you enjoy engaging storytelling, superbly developed characters, and a mystery that is a joy to puzzle out, the Fires of Alexandria is one book you need to add to your bookshelf.
0 Stars — Perfect for kindling or wasting space on your hard drive
1 Star — Perfect gift for that person you can’t stand
2 Stars – Put it on your “to borrow” list
3 Stars – Buy it if you get the chance- worth a weekend read
4 Stars – Definitely add to your library
5 Stars — Impulse Buy Approved
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