Friday, March 30, 2012

"The Marks of Cain" by Tom Knox

When David Martinez receives an ancient map from his dying grandfather, he is led into the heart of the Basque mountains, where a genetic curse lies buried- and a frightening secret about the Western world is hidden. Meanwhile, London journalist Simon Quinn is investigating two violent murders. Both victims had once been interned in a top-secret Nazi camp-and both came from the Basque region.

My brother recommended for me to read Tom Knox’s book, “The Marks of Cain.” The blurb intrigued me as did the first chapter a disturbing look at Simon Quinn’s life, his descent into alcoholism and his brother’s violent, bloody attack on their mother.

The chapters jump from Quinn to Martinez, an orphan who’d dying grandfather gives him a map an and a mystery, one that leads him into danger, and back again, giving two sides to a very complex story. One that at times is hard to follow.

Here’s the thing about this book. The premise is truly intriguing, the idea of subspecies of human’s is a bit mind boggling but Knox blends the facts and fiction well. The action is fairly consistent and well paced, and the book is downright beautifully written despite much of the content involving rape, murder, torture and multiple holocausts. There is no denying that Knox can write, and write very well.

So why did I only give it 3.5 stars? Simple, I had no problem putting the book down. A fact which happened multiple times. For me, a true thriller grips you to the point where you HAVE to find out what happens next. That point didn't happen for me until around the 300 page mark and there are only 430 pages in the story. It was at that point that the pieces of the story began to make sense, that I began to truly want to find out what was going on.For me, there wasn’t enough in the beginning of the book to truly draw me in. The mystery just wasn't strong enough for me to care about. If I hadn’t been reading this book for a review, I’m not sure that I would have finished it and that would have been a shame as the last 130 pages were exactly what a thriller should be.



Mind boggling.

Reviewed by Shannon Mayer

Twitter- @TheShannonMayer

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