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Book Jacket

Trade Paperback
368 pages
Mar 2009
Zondervan

Midnight in Madrid (The Russian Trilogy, Book 2)

by Noel Hynd

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Review:

Following the theft of a valuable ancient Christian relic from a museum in Madrid, Alex LaDuca receives the assignment to assist the Spanish government from her boss at the FBI in Midnight in Madrid by Noel Hynd. The Spanish government fears that the money from the stolen artwork will be used to fund terrorism against itself or the United States. Still recovering from the death of her fiancť and her own wounds (see Conspiracy in Kiev), Alex embarks on discovering who stole The Pieta of Malta.

Meanwhile, in Switzerland someone murders a Chinese man who is searching for the Pieta, and in Spain terrorists seek access to the ancient subterranean levels of Madrid. Once in Madrid, Alex teams up with undercover CIA agent and retired Italian policeman, Gian Antonio Rizzo, whom she has known before, but an attempted abduction puts Rizzo in the hospital and obligates Alex to a mysterious Chinese man, Peter Chang. When her CIA supervisor, whom she has been instructed to work with, demands that she work with this man, Alex has to decide whether he is friend or foe. From Switzerland to Italy, they sweep Europe for the missing Pieta. As terrorism seems the likely purpose for the theft, the question remains whether they can stop the terrorists in time.

Midnight in Madrid races forward as terrorists pursue the mining of a site beneath Madrid and civilizationís defenders search Europe for the identity of the thieves. As threats and danger target them, Alex and Peter Chang debate the necessity of killing in saving lives in some situations. Alex also argues over the nature of redemption and forgiveness with Russian mobster, Yuri Federov. Federov challenges her to live up to the scripture she claims to believe about forgiveness, Matthew 18:21-35.

Hyndís writing is less detailed than Tom Clancyís while maintaining believability, and is less frantically paced than Robert Ludlumís The Bourne Identity while holding interest. Itís a good balance between the two. Plus the action flows through the hands of well-drawn and distinct major and secondary characters.

I do have a problem with the book, but it may be because I havenít read Conspiracy in Kiev. Alex does a lot of drinking, even feeling quite a buzz after going out with her Chinese partner to meet his underlings. I know thrillers are not character driven so much as plot driven, but Alex seems to see no problem with the amount of drinking she does and her Christian testimony. Midnight in Madrid is an intense, exciting story that will appeal to both men and women. Ė Debbie W. Wilson, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com

Book Jacket:

When a mysterious relic is stolen from a Madrid museum, people are dying to discover its secrets. Literally.

U.S. Treasury agent Alexandra LaDuca returns from Conspiracy in Kiev to track down the stolen artwork, a small carving called The Pietŗ of Malta. It seems to be a simple assignment, but nothing about this job is simple, as the mysteries and legends surrounding the relic become increasingly complex with claims of supernatural power.

As aggressive, relentless, and stubborn as ever, Alex crisscrosses Europe through a web of intrigue, danger, and betrayal, joined by a polished, mysterious new partner. With echoes of classic detective and suspense fiction from The Maltese Falcon to The Da Vinci Code, Midnight in Madrid takes the reader on a nonstop spellbinding chase through a modern world of terrorists, art thieves, and cold-blooded killers.