Published October 15, 2014; Blank Slate Press
Genre: historical mystery
Nikos's heart pounded against his rib cage like a siege engine. He pressed his back into the stone wall, closed his eyes and tried to calm his breathing. He couldn't believe he had been such a fool. "Next time I'll surrender the prize," Charis had always promised. Next time he would claim it, he always hoped. But instead ....page 56:
"I don't know No one familiar with the cult's traditions would suspect such a thing. They would never sacrifice one of their own."
Where and when: Delphi 350 BCE, Greece
The plot: Right off the bat, you find out who is killed and who is responsible for the death. Charis, a handmaiden of the head priestess of Gaia, is killed accidentally while trying to blackmail Nikos, son of a priestess. Nikos hides her body on the altar of Appolon to make it look like a sacrifice. "...the priests of Apollon are not on good terms with the priestesses of Gaia." A conflict emerges between these two cults. Who murdered Charis, and why?
Recommendation: A good mystery plot that is enhanced by the setting and time - ancient Greece with the ancient religions vying for prominence. The characters seem very modern in their desires, strengths, weaknesses, their romances and love interests, even in much of their speech. But the location and time makes this mystery unique.
I have always wanted to visit Delphi and the place of Apollo's oracle. Hopefully, someday I will! In the meantime, I have read this book for its setting and historical background. I do wish though that the details of Charis's death/murder had been left in the dark till further in the novel, to enhance the suspense. Give it a try, mystery lovers!
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