THE EGYPTIAN – (Dominic Grey #2)
An investigative reporter tracking rogue biomedical companies is terrified by the appearance of a mummified man outside her Manhattan apartment.
A Bulgarian scientist who dabbles in the occult makes a startling discovery in his underground laboratory.
These seemingly separate events collide when private investigators Dominic Grey and Viktor Radek are hired by the CEO of an Egyptian biomedical firm to locate stolen research integral to the company’s new life extension product. However, after witnessing the slaughter of a team of scientists by the remnants of a dangerous cult thought long abandoned, Grey and Viktor turn from pursuers to pursued.
From the gleaming corridors of visionary laboratories to the cobblestone alleys of Eastern Europe to a lost oasis in the Sahara, Grey and Viktor must sift through science and myth to uncover the truth behind the Egyptian and his sinister biotech—before that truth kills them.
In addition to writing, Layton Green has held down a diverse and varied array of jobs over the years, although he actually attended law school in New Orleans, qualified and was a practicing attorney for the better part of a decade.
He has also been an intern for the United Nations, an ESL teacher in Central America, a bartender in London, a seller of cheap knives on the streets of Brixton, a door-to-door phone book deliverer, and the list goes downhill from there.
Layton is, as you may have gathered, a prolific traveller, having visited more than fifty countries, lived in a number of them and still carries a burning desire to visit every far flung dot on the map.
Religion and cults, as well as all things spiritual and supernatural, have also been a lifelong interest, together with a long-term passion for Japanese Jujitsu.
Combine all of these elements together and it isn’t too difficult to see just where Layton found his inspiration for the character of Dominic Grey and the storylines for this excellent series of adventures.
Catch up with Layton at his website
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The City of the Dead, Cairo, Egypt
“Siti hummed to himself as he picked his way through the crypts and mausoleums shrouded by eerie blue fog. He thought he had outgrown the nervous childhood habit at Cambridge, where he graduated first in his class in biomedical engineering and gained the hand of Halima, a beautiful Cairene girl he never would have dreamed of approaching back home.
The humming resurfaced when the gambling debts started mounting and reached a feverish crescendo when he discovered what was really going on at his company’s compound. Now, as he dodged the tombs and piles of human detritus, looking over his shoulder with every step, he had to fight to keep the humming from becoming a siren call to the thieves and murderers that populated the cemetery after dark….”
“Fascinating Storyline, Intriguing Characters And Non-Stop Action”
I have been eagerly waiting for this second adventure in the ‘Dominic Grey’ series, ever since I was given the opportunity to advance read Layton Green’s first book The Summoner, where we were introduced to this great character.
I was surprised when Layton revealed that The Egyptian was in fact written before The Summoner and impressed that The Summoner was such a huge success as a retrospective introduction for the great concept of the series and the totally believable character of ‘Dominic Grey’.
Dominic has gained great strides in establishing himself as a complex, yet highly principled character, who has still to put his early life struggles behind him completely, before he can devote himself fully to the business tasks ahead of him, begin to establish a private life and form any close and trusting relationships.
He always seems to be looking back to the harsh punishments meted out to his mother and himself, by a sadistic and violent father and I get the feeling that deep down, he is still worried that ‘the sins of the fathers will visit themselves on the sons’ and that he will lose control and become like his father. He therefore remains a tense and highly sprung character, always on the edge and living on his wits and nerves, really rather vulnerable and slightly unpredictable, although he is gaining in confidence all the time, as he sets out to establish his own true identity.
This latest mission finds him delving into scientific and industrial espionage on a grand scale, with the secret of eternal life being the coveted prize. A duplicitous scientist, whom Dominic had dared to call ‘friend’, leaves him feeling betrayed, whilst he is caused great moral distaste and dilemma by the nature of the investigation, delving as it does into the realms of ‘Interspecies Genetic Manipulation’.
His quest, on behalf of his client, to seek out the elixir of eternal life, leads him to the heart of the Egyptian desert, where ancient myths and beliefs figure highly. The ‘mummy,’ the ultimate symbol of physical eternal life, and the spectre of ‘Nu’, the watery element of the Egyptian idea of creation, are still sought after and revered by those seeking the ultimate prize of everlasting life, as Dominic discovers even more shocking and disturbing revelations about the true nature of the scientific research, in this fast paced, plot driven, race against time.
In this highly charged environment Viktor, Dominic’s mentor and employer, plays an important, yet shadowy role. Somehow he always contrives to provide a bedrock of calmness and stability within which Dominic can pursue his quarry and is always there when Dominic needs guidance and advice. He is such an interesting, complex and highly intelligent character, who is developing well in his role as advisor to his new protege.
Now that I have encountered Dominic Green in two completely diverse missions and am beginning to engage with his creator Layton Green’s unique style of presentation and writing, I am minded to think back to earlier this week, when I came across a copy of The Devil and All His Works , by Dennis Wheatley, who has long been acclaimed as one of the best-selling authors of the occult thriller. This particular non-fiction book sets out to sum up his findings and conclusions about the many forces of darkness, from the evidence of invisible influences on mankind, to the outward manifestations of those beliefs.
Layton presents similarly extensive research, which he then cleverly grafts into great plots, full of action and intrigue; where the attention to detail and the inevitable clashes of cultures, give each storyline sequence a life of its own, in a totally immersing page-turning adventure, full of suspense and intrigue.
This book was a review copy, sent to me by the author, Layton Green and as such, was complimentary.
This in no way influenced any comments I may have expressed about the book, in any review I may have compiled. Any thoughts or comments are my own personal opinion and I am in no way being monetarily compensated for this review.
I have no hesitation in rating this book, a resounding 5 out of 5