COMES A HORSEMAN
West Bow Press, December 2005
Reviewed by Barbara Fielding
Two FBI agents, Brady Moore and Alicia Wagner, are called out on an investigation into the gruesome beheading of a woman in Palmer Lake, Colorado. This murder is connected to several slayings across the US called the Pelletier Killings. The division of the FBI to which Moore and Wagner are assigned specializes in the development of new technology for crime scene investigations. When an opportunity to try out the new Crime Scene Digitizer on this latest Pelletier murder arrives, Alicia jumps at the chance to use her experimental forensic Robocop equipment.
Their participation on cases is usually limited to gathering evidence and consulting on crime scene information, but there is something unusual about the Pelletier killings. Moore and Wagner uncover information that quickly leads them into the cross hairs of the unknown killers. Two separate attempts on their lives put them on the run, cut off from the FBI, and force their investigation in some amazing directions.
Leads soon take them to Rome, into the Archives of the Vatican city, and Israel. The Italian Ambassador to Israel is a powerful political figure who believes he is the Antichrist. He is connected to a secret society called The Watchers, a council of twelve powerful global figures, ready to back the man who fulfills all of the ancient prophecies about the Antichrist. When the time is right they will help him rise to power. But is the Ambassador the real candidate? Will Moore and Wagner uncover the truth, or lose their lives trying?
Robert Liparulo has crafted a fine suspense tale that features elements that remind me of the television show CSI, and Dan Brown's THE DA VINCI CODE. Liparulo places Moore and Wagner in a dangerous race against a powerful secret society and forces them to solicit the help of a Cardinal at the Vatican for access to documents within the L'Archivio Segreto Vaticano. He has also supplied Agent Wagner with futuristic technology that is sure to amaze the most ardent CSI followers.
Brady Moore, who is also a criminal psychologist, has a minor romantic interest in his partner Alicia Wagner. It is a slow developing subplot. Moore is a widower who has been grieving over his wife's death and is the father of a young son, Zach. It is the danger to their lives that awakens him to his feelings for his partner.
From the very first page the drama moves quickly from one scene to another and one character to the next. This tale combines rich storytelling with a long list of characters and is almost 500 pages of fast-paced action and adventure. The crime scenes are graphic and bloody; the villains are savage and creepy. It's hard to believe this amazingly suspenseful tale is Liparulo's debut novel. Mr. Liparulo began his writing career as a journalist and screenwriter. His website reports the screen rights for COMES A HORSEMAN have been optioned by the producer of the Tom Clancy films. COMES A HORSEMAN is a standout book in the Christian suspense genre.
[1-14-06 Note: A free download of the audio book version is temporarily available at http://www.comesahorsemanbook.com/ .]
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