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Heffernan's novel falls short only by failing to fully exploit the oppotunities the cultish criminal enterprise offers. As he draws near the end of his tale, the focus becomes concentrated on one member of Opus Dei, rather than the order itself.
While this enables him to wrap up his novel, the reader wants more. In a sense Grisham had the same problem and reached for the same quick solution in The Firm with the "mail fraud" prosecution. But this book is, if anything, more artfully presented than Grisham's classic, and such a facile solution is a bigger loss to the reader.
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I originally read Archbishop Thuan's exercises by way of Zenit - the News of Rome. As compelling as those accounts were, the book is even better. Archbishop Van Thuan's experiences, as a prisoner in Communist prisons for 13 years, and his insight on faith are true food for a hungry soul.
Testimony of Hope is the complete text of those Exercises. Archbishop Van Thuan's description of isolation and abandonment, and his secret for finding hope in despair makes for moving and uplifting reading.
I guarantee that readers will be moved by the 22 meditations. Archbishop Van Thuan offers light amidst the darkness. The book is a quick, easy, and inspirational read.
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This is a book you don't want to miss.
It keeps you interested throughout the entire
book. I just kept trying to guess who was involved
with the murders but it was to tricky. So many things
were going on you didn't want to put the book
down. I would really like to see this book put
on the big screen or even a T.V. movie. If you like
thrillers don't miss this one.
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In a land of religious voodoo and secret police, Devlin's detective skills are foreign for a country that seems to be in a mercurial state of chaos and poverty. He's not sure whether the local cops are good guys or bad guys. And he needs a score card to figure out what the nine different law enforcement agencies have jurisdiction over. In a state of utter confusion, he enlists his in-your-face partner and sidekick, Ollie Pitts, to come to the red nation to help make sense out of this and the evolving and bizarre clues surrounding the missing aunt and Cuban hero. New York's finest soon learn that witch craft and human sacrifice are a religious way of life for many in Cuba.
Devlin is use to the standard fare of chasing the bad guys around in the Big Apple. But it seems the opposite is happening in Cuba while he, tough-guy Pitts and the local police hunt for the missing Red Angel. But why are the Americans themselves being hunted on the island? The quid quo pro chase makes for a constant nerve-racking suspense. And with religion and other belief systems in constant play, it seems that anything is possible. All the possibilities surrounding the missing Red Angel are sorted out with a clever, intriguing and satisfying close to this continuing Paul Devlin mystery series novel.
When the threesome set out to find the Red Angel's body, they confront the sinister head of the Cuban secret police, Colonel Cabrera, who says he wants to help, but is actually in cohoots with the Mafia henchmen that Devlin has been dealing with in New York.
So much for the beginning...the plot only thickens from this point on. There are so many twists, turns, political innuendos, and black magic to absorb in this book that you're guaranteed to lose some sleep, if not from the action, then certainly from trying to keep up with who's who and what's what.
Overall this was a very entertaining read. Although it does get bogged down with details in several spots, I made it to the end quite satisfied.
I would rate this 3 and 1/2 stars. The characters lack some depth, the explanations were a bit too long in spots, but Heffernan is a very smart writer who handles a ton of information and a very eager audience quite deftly.