I must admit, I'm a hard person to buy books for. I usually know what's coming out, when it's coming out, and odds are I've found a way to get it before you know I want it. But my husband is a clever, clever man, and he found a way to surprise me on my birthday.
He bought me a copy of "Illuminated", thinking it was my kind of book.
Was he ever RIGHT!! Oh, and as for the author of this hidden gem...
Know who Matt Bronleewe is?
You might think of him as a founding member of Jars of Clay.
I'll forever think of him as the author of his shining debut novel "Illuminated."
"Illuminated" is a rip-roaring, Indiana Jones kind of read. It grabs hold of you and moves faster than a two year old drinking a double shot of Red Bull (now, THAT'S a scary image)!
August Adams is a finder and researcher of ancient and rare books. What highbrow people call an archaeobibliologist. On a flight home from Germany with a rare and very rewarding find, he strikes up a conversation with his seatmate that sends a cascade of events moving, domino style.
Each chapter twists more than a hairpin, windy road. Right when you think you can breathe, he picks up speed again with another conflict, another obstacle, another shadow to flinch at.
Two secret and believed to be imaginary organizations are after the same thing...a hidden treasure buried in the illuminated pages of the Gutenberg Bibles. Oh, if it were only that simple!
Part Indiana Jones, part Bourne conspiracy, part National Treasure...this is an action packed and historically based novel that will get your blood pumping and your eyebrows raised in speculative "what if?"
My only concern was a lack of character development. We don't have a lot of background on August, April, or Charlie Adams. And yet from their immediate introduction into the story, we are so invested in the ultimate outcome for each of them that you don't even realize YOU'VE JUST MET THEM!!
Now, that is POWERFUL character development, my friends! Very difficult to do, yet masterfully done. Bravo, Matt Bronleewe, Bravo!!
Matt puts a note of explanation in the back of his fictional story that casts his novel into deeper examination. Secret societies, church conspiracies, and hidden treasures...what more could an adrenaline junkie like me want in a novel??
Answer: More!! Can't wait to find out what Mr. Bronleewe is doing next...
A stunning debut, "Illuminated" gets the full five out of five bookmarks from me, with a tiger shark charm...read it to find out why!!