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    fast paced, enjoyable action/adventure novel

    The Pharaoh Key by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child is a highly recommended final novel and fitting ending (?) to the Gideon Crew series. Gideon Crew has a brain arteriovenous malformation or AVM, and has about two months left to live, however, he will remain strong and mobile right until the end so the doctor's advice is for him to live every minute the best way he can. He and his engineer colleague Manuel Garza have also discovered, after not being paid for months and no word of warning from their employer Eli Glinn that they no longer have a job with Effective Engineering Solutions, EES. Garza calls Crew telling him that they have a few hours to clear their belongings out of the office. While gathering what they can, they discover that a code-breaking computer at EES, after working on it for almost five years, has cracked the code found on the centuries-old stone tablet, the Phaistos Disc. With some sleight of hand, the two smuggle out a copy of the findings on a flash drive. The two work on deciphering the data and agree to split the treasure they expect to find. Their destination is the remote and forbidden zone of the Hala’ib Triangle in southeastern Egypt. The treasure hunt involves one mishap and disaster after another, but still Crew and Garza keep pressing on to the remote location. The Pharaoh Key is a fast paced, enjoyable action/adventure novel that involves more than one unexpected twist. Although reading the previous novels will give you additional background information and character development, I think you can enjoy this one as a stand-alone for the sheer value of the escapism and adventure it will provide. Are there some unanswered questions? Sure. Lucky coincidences? Yup. Miraculous escapes? Uh huh. But is it a page-turner? Oh, yes! Adding to the action, Preston and Child manage to keep the tone light and even evoke a few laughs while providing an entertaining adventure, which, in the end is worthy of at least 4 out of 5 stars (and only rated in comparison against their other novels). Preston and Child know how to write well-paced entertaining story and that was certainly the case here. I enjoyed reading The Pharaoh Key Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Grand Central Publishing via Netgalley.

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