Saturday, May 17, 2008

The Secret Scroll

by Ronald Cutler

The comparison has to be made to Dan Brown's The DaVinci Code because their is quite a bit of similarity in plot. A religious artifact is discovered that could have worldwide reverberations in the Christian world, if the artifact is indeed authentic and if knowledge of it is made public. There is a fanatic sect that are willing to do all manners of evil things to stop that from happening.

Through visionary dreams and happenstance Josh Cohan is led to a cave where he discovers a scroll that may have been written by Jesus Christ. I could have bought into that premise if the writing on the scroll had any magnificence to it. If Jesus was an ordinary man, as purported in the scroll, he would have shown some brilliance, charisma - after all he was a great leader and persuaded masses of people to follow Him. Instead the scrolls revealed no show of inner character. Basically, Jesus wrote in the scrolls that he was an ordinary man who argued a lot with his parents who always loved his brother James more. He also argued a lot with James. He experienced the ways of the flesh as a teen, but later chose a life of celibacy.

The book lost its credibility as soon as parts of the scroll were presented. I realize it's a novel and is not trying to prove the scrolls are real, but the author needed to convince me of the efficacy of the scroll for me to buy into the premise of the novel.

There was adventure and mystery as to who was leaking information to the fanatic religious sect. This was the author's first book and I think he shows promise. All-in-all, I would only rate this book as average.


Kailana said...

I swear, from here on in, everytime a book has a bit of adventure in it, people are going to compare it to the Da Vinci's Code... The only author I have read that was in that bracket is James Rollins. I try to stay away from all of the craziness.

Anonymous said...

Another book on similar lines (though it far predates the Da vinci Core) is A Skeleton in God's Closet, by Paul Maier. The basic premise is that an archaeological dig turns up what seems to be the body of Jesus Christ -- with adventure & romance & and a couple of murders thrown in to boot. It's really very good -- I think that you would enjoy it.

Booklogged said...

Kailana, I am generally put out when things are copied, especially if they don't pull it off well.

SheReads, I'll keep a look out for it. Thanks for the recommendation.

Bookfool said...

I'm with Kailana on avoiding the copycat books, although I haven't actually even read The DaVinci Code. I read another Dan Brown book and found it rather ridiculous toward the end, so I haven't had any interest in reading another book by Brown. At the moment, the title escapes me.

Katherine said...

I read this book as an ARC, and I have to say that I absolutely hated it. For me, the book lost credibility right from the get-go. My review of the book is somewhere on my blog... I'm just a little bit too lazy right now to go and dig it up.

Framed said...

I enjoyed The Da Vinci Code enough that I bought a copy with pictures of the different places described in the book. I thought it would be fun to read and see at the same time. Never got back to it. I guess I lost interest and never felt inclined to read his next book and I will gladly skip this one as well.