A review by CJ Dee
While on holiday in Egypt, CIA agent Curtis O’Connor and archaeologist Aleta Weizman stumble across a finding that could lead them to an ancient secret. If true, this secret could do away with the world’s need for fossil fuels.
Meanwhile, an organisation known as Pharos Group uses fossil fuel funding, blackmail, media ties and even terrorism to create a viable presidential candidate who will lead the world according to Pharos Group’s ideologies.
I had a lot of difficulty getting into The Alexandria Connection. It had an interesting plot and engaging characters but it was also very convoluted. Most of the storylines were well-linked and moved the story but there were some that just felt unnecessary and tacked on as an afterthought.
The convoluted plot wasn’t helped at all by multiple aspects of the writing style. Minutiae were described in great detail and often descriptions were made beyond the point of caring. Actual thoughts I had while reading included ‘Why do I care that the hero has always used that type of gun’, ‘I get that the bad guy is super rich, move on with the plot’, ‘Okay, okay, they buy a lot of art — get back to the plot.’
The overly-long descriptions aren’t just confined to the narrative either. The characters themselves go on and on long-winded overly detailed historic, technical or scientific streams of dialogue. If I was a person standing next to the characters while they were droning on, I would have either zoned out or left at so many points throughout the story.
As it is, The Alexandria Connection is a very long book that could have been tightened up and edited down by half. A quarter at the very least.
Overall, most threads of the plot seem interesting but others languish behind significantly. The characters are well-formed. The heroes are likeable and the villains are loathsome. Sadly, you don’t get to fully enjoy most of the good aspects because the walls of dialogue and flood of unnecessary descriptions are far too distracting. I wouldn’t recommend The Alexandria Connection unless you are a hardcore political/CIA thriller fan who doesn’t mind trudging through a swamp of nitty gritty.
Rating: 2.5 out of 5stars
Format: paperback, 469 pages
Publisher: Penguin (Penguin Random House)