The Last Ember – 4 stars
Jonathan is an american lawyer who has a nice profile for case related to relics because he was once a doctoral student of classics at Rome. But when he is called back to Rome for a simple case related to an ancient stone piece, he finds a message encrypted in it. With help of a few friends from the past that he had left behind, he discovers a conspiracy so hidden and ancient that no one knows or believes it. But little does he know that the terrorists are also trying to destroy every trace of it which may cause an unrepairable damage in Jewish-Christian history. With a shoot-at-sight on his own head and terrorists at his heels, his only way to survive is to find it first.
This by far the most underrated novel I’ve ever read. Dan Brown, Steve Berry, Sam Bourne and numerous authors have made “Treasure hunting” a highly popular genre among today’s books and as too many writer are writing, one starts to notice some clichés and to get bored with same formats and pitch-perfect characters where no one forgets anything they ever had read or done. And that is where Daniel Levin has entered with a a very very fresh take.
Daniel Levin himself is a lawyer and if read carefully, it can be felt who the hero Jonathan is a traced on. The writing is fluid and the book doesn’t give headache with unnecessary infos(
take that David Gibbins). But what I liked most about this book is that the characters are not perfect. Not as good or bad, I mean no one is a perfect professor(don’t get me wrong, I like Robert Langdon but still sometime he feels like a computer) or assassin or collector and everyone has their shortcomings and lacking. Thus they feel very realistic and grounded. With some little poke in religions and a very nice threat hanging over head, Mr Levin has written a stupendous book.
Nothing feels forced or too much complex in the Last Ember and that simplicity is what makes this very enjoyable. As a début novel, this really strong and others really have to watch out if Daniel Levin develops more.
I highly recommend this book to any mystery, thriller, treasure loving readers.