BOOK REVIEW: A jumpy storyline in quest for hidden secrets

JUDGING the book by its cover, book one of the Serpent Papers Trilogy looked like a Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code and Stieg Larson's Girl with a Dragon Tattoo combination.

So it should have been a very interesting and nail-biting read.

I am, however, a little ashamed to admit that it was too intense for me to finish it.

It didn't flow easily, the story jumped from the present to the past or into central character Anna Verco's visions.

Cornwell's Anna Verco is a young palaeographer who is hired by a wealthy organisation to find an ancient manuscript, written by an alchemist, Rex Illuminatus, which is rumoured to contain hidden secrets.

Verco has an ability to sense certain things, but doesn't like to call it psychic ability. She has a knack for finding the impossible.

As the search continues, she finds herself delving into an old investigation of murders that happened in Barcelona.

Cornwell obviously has researched the subject matter very well, and for those seeking an intricate tale and don't mind having to stay intensely focused to remember the threads of the plot, then give it a go.

For me, I'm going to try again during my next holiday, when I have more time to concentrate.

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