Tour Review: The Tenth Saint (The Sarah Weston Chronicles #1)

Challenge: Historical Fiction Challenge
Blurb: Cambridge archaeologist Sarah Weston makes an unusual discovery in the ancient Ethiopian mountain kingdom of Aksum—a sealed tomb with inscriptions in an obscure dialect. Along with her colleague, American anthropologist Daniel Madigan, she tries to identify the entombed man and translate the inscriptions. Tracking down clues in Addis Ababa and the monasteries of Lalibela, Sarah and Daniel uncover a codex in the subterranean library revealing the secret of the tomb—a set of prophecies about Earth’s final hours, written by a man hailed by Ethiopian mystics as Coptic Christianity’s 10th saint. Faced with violent opposition and left for dead in the heart of the Simien Mountains, Sarah and Daniel survive to journey to Paris, where they’re given a 14th-century letter describing the catastrophic events that will lead to the planet’s demise.
Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository | GoodReads

Book: The Tenth Saint: Book One (The Sarah Weston Chronicles #1)
Publisher: Medallion Press, 2012
Genre: Historical Fiction, Historical Thriller, Science Fiction
Rating: heartheartheart
Source + Date Read: Purchased + June 2013
Recommend: I’d recommend this for those looking for a good historical thriller with a sci-fi twist (Though the sci-fi bit isn’t really clear till near the end of the book).
Book Pro’s: The Tenth Saint is a thrilling twist filled with intrigue and historical drama.
Book Con’s: Somewhat conventional storyline in that we have overworked female, in comes overworked male with a winning smile and ability to manage work and a sex life. Female discovers secret, falls in love with male, saves world. The end.
Favourite Line: “Freedom cannot be labeled nor won nor envied. Only when one doesn’t realize what freedom is, is one truly free.”

Cover:
You gotta give it to Medallion Press’ illustration crew, they know how to throw together a murky enough cover to get book readers piqued. It’s murky, it’s great and it reveals just enough clues about the story line.

Setting:
Set in the Ethiopian area of Aksum, our protagonist, archaeologist Sarah Weston (really? I just finished reading City of Dark Magic and the chick’s name was Sarah Weston too! This must be a very popular literary name. I guess. What are the odds?) stumbles upon (literally, she stumbles) an age-old secret and is determined to come to the truth of the matter before sinister forces silence her for good.

Review:
So I’m reviewing DJ Niko’s second novel in the Sarah Weston Chronicles for the Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours and I wanted to get some context before I reviewed that one. Thankfully this book is free now on Amazon (yes!) and I was able to get a proper sense for the series and the characters before I moved on.

Thankfully, the style and genre of the book is right up my alley. I love it when books employ some sense of historical intrigue (successfully) with a strong set of characters (preferably female) and a hidden secret. It’s like the Da Vinci code with a female twist, and less about art and more about the stuff. You know, the small itsy bits of history that tend to mean a lot more than you’d think they would.

DJ Niko is a very good writer and successfully pulls everything off. I don’t imagine this was an easy feat but Niko’s style coupled with her very solid research make The Tenth Saint a true delight for Historical Fiction/Thriller fans! My only quip with the story line is that is has moments of cliché. The plot was a bit too contrived and to be honest, I’m tired of reading about a beautiful, rich and smart girl trying to prove something to the men (most often they’re trying to one up their fathers) in their lives by over-working and appearing mean all the time. Why can’t a strong female be bubbly and nice without being taken as a bimbo? Why must they be stressed and play hardball to be taken seriously? That would probably be a true work of fiction, huh?


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About Claire (BWB)

It's Claire (aka Quirky) from Bitches With Books, an online book blog that serves up a healthy dose of book reviews, lists + literary madness.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, Historical Fiction, SFF. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Tour Review: The Tenth Saint (The Sarah Weston Chronicles #1)

  1. Pingback: 2013 Reading Challenge Round-Up: PASS or FAIL Edition | Bitches With Books

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  4. Love the setting — will have to get this one for sure! (V odd abt the similarly named heroines, though!)

  5. DoingDewey says:

    Ethiopia seems like a really unique setting for historical fiction although perhaps I just need to expand my horizons a bit! Either way, it makes me much more interested in trying this out 🙂

  6. Pingback: Review: The Riddle Of Solomon | Bitches With Books

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