The Lost Island

Written by Preston Child

Review written by Adam Colclough

Adam Colclough lives and works in the West Midlands, he writes regularly for a number of websites, one day he will get round to writing a book for someone else to review.

The Lost Island
Head of Zeus
RRP: £18.99
Released: May 5 2016

Who do you turn to if you need to steal a page from the Book of Kells, which just happens to be surrounded by layers of security in New York's Morgan Library? If you're billionaire Eli Glinn you give the job to polymath thief Gideon Crew.

Pulling off the crime of the century is only the start, the page hides a map that will send Crew on a quest for a treasure that may change the world; or destroy it. Racing against time, something he is dangerously short of, Crew must unravel a mystery older than time.

On one level this book is firmly in the tradition of the 'ripping good yarn'. Its plot involves a treasure map printed on the hide of a creature previously believed to be mythical,  a linkage to Homer's Odyssey, and a drug that could end sickness for good. Remarkably none of this comes over as too, far-fetched,  as the high concept is backed by an explanation so convincing, you almost wish it were true.

The action scenes, be they in a crowded metropolitan museum, on the high seas or in the depths of the jungle are choreographed expertly and delivered at a blistering pace. You can almost feel the deck lurch, or hear something unearthly crash through the jungle as you turn the pages.

What keeps this from being another Dan Brown style romp is a notable lack of pretension; the book wears the research that clearly went into writing, with a subtle touch. Also, amidst the splash and dash of the plot, the authors ask some neatly disguised, but still pertinent questions about how humanity treats the earth's last wild places, greed and accepting the consequences, intended or otherwise of your actions.

This is an expertly written and hugely entertaining book from a writing partnership that isn’t afraid to give their audience some food for thought amongst the thrills and spills.

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