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In 2007 Simon Toyne quit his job and moved to France to fulfil a long-held desire to write a thriller. After a sleepless night crossing the channel, he and his family abandoned a planned eight-hour drive to their new home and limped instead to the city of Rouen. It was the sight of the sharp spire of Rouen Cathedral piercing the pre-dawn sky that gave birth to the fiction Citadel of SANCTUS. SANCTUS, his first novel, became an immediate bestseller. To date it has been translated into 23 languages and published in 40 countries.
Praise for THE KEY: `Among the best current thrillers' SUNDAY EXPRESS Praise for SANCTUS: `A cool, confident debut ... with pace, grace and a keen eye for cinematic effect' DAILY TELEGRAPH `Intriguing and engaging ... Relentless pace. An exciting and interesting read. I look forward to returning to Ruin, where there are plenty of stories waiting to be told' THE SUN `High concept, debut conspiracy thrillers don't come with higher expectations than this. Hard to think of it as a debut, better to think of it as the beginning of a massive new adventure, and a so-long to Dan Brown' MIRROR 'A fast moving, thoroughly enjoyable, adventure - plenty of action, plenty of intrigue and a wonderfully imaginative reinterpretation of a slice of religious history. The sort of novel to devour in one sitting' KATE MOSSE
The middle volume of Toyne's Sanctus trilogy (after 2011's Sanctus) fails to deliver on the promise of the first. In the ancient Turkish city of Ruin, hostility to Catholicism has prompted someone to set off explosives at the Citadel, "the oldest continually inhabited structure on earth and the original center of the Catholic Church," and the resulting damage has led to the first ever appearance in public of any of the Citadel's occupants. Speculation runs rampant that the survivors of the bombing possess the real secret of the sacrament, another church-foundation-rattling possibility that, unfortunately for the Vatican, coincides with another, more mundane crisis. Cardinal Secretary of State Clementi has learned that trillions of dollars have disappeared from the church's coffers and hangs his hope for a solution on the secrets of Ruin. Readers should be prepared for less than engaging protagonists and trite setups (e.g., one character avoids being murdered by pure chance). Agent: Alice Saunders, LAW Agency. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A week has passed since a green-cassocked monk plummeting from a mountaintop in Toyne's debut thriller Sanctus commenced a prophecy that throws the Vatican's Number Two man into panic mode. This sequel finds the Citadel monastery in ruins and the survivors of the previous ordeal dropping from Vatican-ordered hits. Journalist Liv Adamsen realizes that her involvement in the tumult is far from over as she regains her memories of the prior week. How can she resume her mundane life when she senses she is somehow bound to the sacred? If Liv and co-protagonist Gabriel Mann can reach the wellspring of humanity before assassins find them, she and the Sacrament will be liberated, cataclysm prevented, and mankind saved. Verdict Equal parts religious artifact thriller and tale of palace intrigue, this dramatic follow-up to Sanctus will reward fans of the first book. However, new readers will struggle to follow the convoluted plot.-Laura A.B. Cifelli, Ft. Myers-Lee Cty. P.L., FL (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.