By Boyd Morrison
Touchstone, $24.99, 438 pages

One way to plan a heist is to make the police think that a terrorist attack has taken place in another part of the city. By the time everyone figures out that a hoax has been perpetrated, you’ve done what you needed to do, with the vault emptied of everything that you want plus other valuables that will keep people looking in all the wrong places.

Enter our protagonist, a double kidnapping, an unwilling expert in classical languages, and the small matter of the bomb that will require her language skills and his engineering skills to beat the 20-minute deadline before the Seattle ferry blows up. The pace never lets up, as one obstacle after another must be overcome. Throw in the fable of King Midas’ legendary riches and Greek inventor Archimedes, and you have a thriller that will keep you turning pages as our two unwilling subjects race across Europe against the ever-ticking clock. There are a few similarities to the more famous Dan Brown novels, and fans will enjoy the linking of clues that leads to a very satisfactory climax.

Reviewed by Dick Morris