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The Last Cato: A Novel [Englisch] [Gebundene Ausgabe]

Matilde Asensi
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Kurzbeschreibung

4. April 2006

A masterful blend of Christian scholarship and thrilling adventure, The Last Cato is a novel about the race to find the secret location of the Vera Cruz, the True Cross on which Christ was crucified, and the ancient brotherhood sworn to protect it.

Holy relics are disappearing from sacred spots around the world—and the Vatican will do whatever it takes to stop the thieves from stealing what is left of the scattered splinters of the True Cross.

Brilliant paleographer Dr. Ottavia Salina is called upon by the highest levels of the Roman Catholic Church to decipher the scars found on an Ethiopian man's corpse: seven crosses and seven Greek letters.

The markings, symbolizing the Seven Deadly Sins, are part of an elaborate initiation ritual for the Staurofilakes, the clandestine brotherhood hiding the True Cross for centuries, headed by a secretive figure called Cato.

With the help of a member of the Swiss Guard and a renowned archaeologist, Dr. Salina uncovers the connection between the brotherhood and Dante's Divine Comedy, and races across the globe to Christianity's ancient capitals. Together, they will face challenges that will put their faith—and their very lives—to the ultimate test.

-- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch .

Produktinformation

  • Gebundene Ausgabe: 464 Seiten
  • Verlag: Rayo; Auflage: First Edition, First Printing (4. April 2006)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0060828579
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060828578
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 23,5 x 17,5 x 3,6 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 2.547.529 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

“What fans will like [about The Last Cato]: international travel, puzzles, secret societies and historical treasures.” (USA Today)

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Matilde Asensi is the author of many internationally bestselling thrillers, including The Last Cato. She lives in Alicante, Spain.


Matilde Asensi, periodista y escritora española, ha publicado varios libros bestsellers, incluyendo su primera novela, El salón de ámbar, que ha sido traducida a varios idiomas, Iacobus que la situó en los primeros puestos de las listas bestsellers y El último catón que la confirmó como la autora de su generación de mayor éxito de crítica y público. Actualmente reside en Alicante, España.

-- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch .

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All things of great beauty-from works of art to sacred objects-suffer the unstoppable effects of the passage of time, just as we do. Lesen Sie die erste Seite
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This is a book that can trigger many sparks of interests in a multitude of areas: similar to Dan Brown's 'Angels and Demons' and 'Da Vinci Code' this book builds up suspense from early pages with a dead person carrying a mysterious box and showing strange marks all over the body. The thriller like story is then very well combined with a lot of historic background of the Church and history. A nun who tells the story, a Vatican Swiss Guard Captain and an Egyptian archeologist are teamed up to stop a secret organization. Their mission takes them to important historical places where they must pass very difficult tests decoding symbols and Dante's 'Divine Comedy'.

After setting the ground and a good characterization of the 3 main characters, the story builds up a fascinating course at a relatively high speed. It is very difficult to stop reading with all the tension being built over the various tests performed, but I could not resist against verifying some of the historic references after important highlights of the book.

Matilde Asensi uses a new interpretation of Dante's Divine Comedy to code the tasks required in the various tests in a very interesting way. The book is a very well done mix of fiction and research and invites interested people to research all information sources about the places named in the book, Dante's Purgatory, the excavation results from various sites and other points of interests. The book appears to have a more comprehensive research foundation than Dan Brown's novels but does not reach the same action speed as those.

The Last Cato is a definite must for all readers attracted by thrillers in a historic context. The author has a rare capability to span a wide area of topics (religion, history, Mafia, mystery etc.) to build up the story.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.9 von 5 Sternen  160 Rezensionen
57 von 59 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Wonderful book - not a DaVinci Code knockoff! 23. April 2006
Von ellen - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
At first I resisted getting this book, because I thought it was another DaVinci Code knockoff - then I saw it was written BEFORE Dan Brown's hit novel, and got it. And boy, am I glad I did! Beware if you are interested in this book, not to look too hard at the book description printed on this book's Amazon computer page - it has a big plot spoiler in it - But the book is wonderful, and is the 3rd book I literally was upset to finish! (The first was Angels and Demons, the second was Carved in Bone)
As an English major, I was familiar with Dante's The Divine Comedy - not my favorite work - but Dante did for this quest what Leonardo did for Brown's book. The quest, dealing with pieces of the Holy Cross that Jesus was crucified on, takes us on a grand adventure in many wonderful cities - As a Greek Orthodox Christian, was glad there were many accurate descriptions of different sites and priests - even the Patriarch in Constantinople - Also my name is deals with Helen and Constantine, so I was more tweeked with curiosity . The only thing I didn't like, and this was due to translation issues, is they especially at the beginning kept calling our churches as temples - Some folks still think we worship Zeus in temples, and in the translation the word church was printed as temple - but if that's the greatest thing wrong with this book no prob. Also beware, the chapters are 40 pages+ or so - This is a wonderful book filled with adventure, history, romance, and just about everything that makes you pick up a book and read it - This is definitely worth reading!!!!!!!!!
11 von 12 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen A very good read 24. Dezember 2006
Von kitjank - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Wasn't too sure about this one at first, and I went back and forth before I decided to buy it. It turned out to be one of those books you are actually dissapointed when it ends and there isn't a sequal. The charachters are fantastic! It's been a long time since I've read a book where the people in it were very real and alive. Asensi did a beautiful job in that. Regardless of the other reviews that complain about the translation, I had no problem whatsoever with it. It flowed and read like a well written novel should. The plot was gripping and the history and descriptions of all the places were so well done. The ending was just a bit, well, kind of sappy, so the 4 stars instead of 5, but that by no means took away any of the enjoyment I got from reading it. If you like history, travel and a good thriller, you will like this book.
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen Sorry .... I couldn't believe it 25. Juli 2008
Von Peter A. Kimball - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch
This book lies at the epicenter of a triangle whose vertices are "The DaVinci Code", "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade", and "The Magic Flute". I hasten to note that "The Last Cato" was written before Dan Brown's novel, so, when the narrator, Dr. Ottavio Salina, the famous paleographer, is recruited by her superiors at the Vatican to untangle a centuries-old religious conspiracy, and you say "this is just like Robert Langdon, the symbologist", remember that Asensi is not borrowing from Brown. Although I wouldn't at all be surprised to find out that Ms. Asensi saw the Indiana Jones movie! Don't buy this in expectation of bloody climaxes and killer Nazi/Opus Dei guys though. I cited Mozart for a reason.

I have a bias toward novels with elaborate scholarly puzzles in them, so when find out from a book jacket that the protagonists are going to decode Dante and track down the True Cross, I am full of anticipatory pleasure as we plunge into Codices and Byzantine history and archaeological digs. But ultimately I can't recommend the book. I'm willing to suspend a lot of disbelief for this kind of thing, but ultimately Ms. Asensi just asks too much.

I'm not even talking only about how vast in scope and flawless in execution this previously undetected age-old conspiracy has to be, or how they are supposed to get Universal Studios-style special effects with Graeco-Roman technology. I can grumble about that, but I can live with it if I have to.

But even more unbelievable is the social psychology of it all. Do you believe, for example, that it's possible to develop a series of physical and mental ordeals such that "those who pass them [are] incapable of doing gratuitous, senseless harm"? If that were so, wouldn't the Green Berets be going around doing good like Franciscan monks? It's not a problem for it if a character believes such things, but it gets to be a problem when the author does.

Throughout the book, people act like nobody would really act, both on an individual level and as collectives and institutions. I'm talking not only about the adventurer protagonists -- I'm talking about the Vatican itself, which supposedly wants them to find "the answer" and would rather they not die halfway through, but when it comes down to it is repeatedly content to send them off to hunt like so many ferrets sent down a badger hole and wait passively for their return.

At one point, for instance, the protagonists are stuck in what amounts to a hedge maze. Nobody has thought to bring in a cell phone, or a GPS locator, or a satellite photograph of the area. They could have. Nobody on the outside apparently feels like doing anything to make sure they aren't dead, like looking for them with a helicopter (they HAVE helicopters). For some reason, everybody is "sticking to the rules", as if Salina and company were out for a day of orienteering or something. And the whole book is like this. Of course we all realize that the author wants us to concentrate on the puzzles and challenges, and that it might be a poor piece of fiction if they just blasted through everything with rock drills and the Air Force and so on, but you have to have some plausible reason why people act as they do, don't you?

I know what has happened here, really - the author has gotten overly focused on the intellectual problems involved; she has worked hard to create a set of puzzles and she thinks that by doing so she has done all the work she really has to. But I disagree. Creating a novel is a puzzle of a different kind - somehow you have to put the pieces together in a way that makes the reader think that this sort of thing might really happen. (Leaving aside obvious fantastic/allegorical fiction, that is.) I don't think Ms. Asensi devoted nearly enough attention to this last step.
6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Do you like good thrillers? 25. Februar 2006
Von Clara Haskil - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
You have one here. Documented, terribly imaginative, intriguing, with interesting and unusual main characters ... You will not find here another hyper-attractive and boring "Indiana Jones" man playing the principal role, but ... a nun !! And middle aged !!

But the best thing is that you will even like her, and will not be able to stop reading till the book is finished.

Just try. I have read 4 of Asensi's novels (all in spanish), and I think this one is the best of them. Recommended.
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Fast-paced adventure/mystery and a great read! 4. Juni 2007
Von MLRapp - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch
While I categorize this novel as a "fast-paced adventure/mystery," it doesn't start off quite that way; rather, it starts off slowly and just before you reach the half-way point(when the "tests" begin- I won't say anything more), the pace quickens and quickens until you find you just can't put it down. The character development and plot are finely crafted, and the historical, religious, geographical and Dante references/connections show the author clearly did an enormous amount of research.

In the aftermath of The Da Vinci Code's worldwide sucess, so many books today that happen to fall into a similar genre find themselves being comparred to Dan Brown's work, to their detriment. It doesn't do this work (and others for sure) justice to compare it to that novel, not only because this is an excellent novel that stands alone and has nothing to do with The Da Vinci Code, but also because it gives readers certain preconceived notions that may affect their enjoyment of the novel. Thus, please don't think this novel has anothing whatsoever to do with The Da Vinci Code- it is entirely different and shines alone.

While the ending is satisfying and extremely interesting, I simply didn't want it to end and like other reviewers, wish there was room for a sequel. Hopefully, more of Ms. Asensi's works will be translated into English, since she's a terrific and talented writer who completely enages her readers.
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