I received a copy of The Alexandria Connection by Adrian d’Hage from Penguin Books Australia, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion.
As a huge lover of any story involving ancient cultures, I’d actually had my eye on d’Hage’s books for quite awhile, but was never able to find hard copies (even online!). However, after agreeing to review The Alexandria Connection, the latest in d’Hage’s series featuring CIA agent Curtis O’Conner and beautiful Archeologist Aleta Weizman, all of the previous books came on sale on iTunes! Despite my book buying ban, thanks to being broke, I considered this coincidence serendipity and had to get them while they were so affordable! So, although the Alexandria Connection could be read as a stand alone book, I also read the Maya Codex and the Inca Prophecy, and enjoyed the additional insight that the previous books provided.
D’Hage’s books all follow a similar formula; whispers arise about messages left for the modern world by destroyed ancient civilisations, and the good guys must race the bad guys to protect that knowledge – and help save the world from predicted disasters. Interestingly, many of the books in this genre were published before the famous date in 2012, when the Mayans predicted the end of the world. Since the world didn’t end, and people continued to write, I feel that it has created more of a challenge for authors to come up with new ways to explore the mysteries of our past – without relying on an armageddon that never actually came to pass.
To my boyfriend’s frustration, I believe that there is a kernel of truth in stories like these. Modern society knows an awful lot, but I’m not arrogant enough to believe that we have all of the answers. Many archeologists and scientists have found evidence of past global disasters and cultures, but everything hasn’t quite come together yet and we can’t see the bigger picture about how everything fits together!
Fast paced action defines these books and, 80% of the time, d’Hage has that down to an art. The characters flit across the globe, between archeological sites and capital cities, evading bad guys and dodging death again and again. However, occasionally d’Hage gets bogged down in over complicated explanations of missile functions, or car history, or political backstory. Given the complex interweaving of politics, religion, terror and history throughout the book, I do understand and enjoy the breadth of information covered, but think that it could perhaps be incorporated more smoothly and simply.
Overall, this book held up well against other books in the same category, and I’d definitely pick up another instalment of O’Connor and Weizman’s adventures! I look forward to seeing what conspiracies and mysteries d’Hage tackles next.