Thursday, 1 December 2022

The Witch of Babylon

Finished November 26
The Witch of Babylon by D.J. McIntosh

This novel, the first in a trilogy, reaches back to ancient Babylonia and Assyria in the events that influence the plot. The main character, John Madison, is a Turkish-American art dealer, who was found and raised by his older half-brother Samuel after his parents' deaths. 
The two are close in many ways, but not in all. Samuel was also involved in the art world, specializing in ancient artifacts from the Middle East. As the book begins, John is going home from the hospital, where he has been recovering from a car accident, one in which he was driving the car, and that resulted in Samuel's death. Samuel had just returned from Iraq, where he had been trying to save museum pieces from looters following the Iraq War. There is one particular relic that Samuel had been focused on, one that hadn't yet gained the attention of the art and archeological world. 
John finds that he must follow in Samuel's footsteps and stay one step ahead of the others trying to find the artifact in order to find out what Samuel cared this much about, and to resolve his own personal issues. It may also be the only way to save his own life. 
John's old friend and client Hal has inserted himself into the situation and left John a puzzle to solve to be able to move forward in the search. Also involved is an archeologist named Tomas Zakar and his brother Ari, an Iraqi photojournalist. 
Among the people trying to find the artifact by any means necessary is an attractive young woman named Eris and a mysterious group of masked people who have an interest in alchemy. John doesn't know who to trust and makes many missteps in his searching. From New York to Iraq, this novel takes John on a journey into the past, both ancient and his own. 

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