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Review: The Return by Carter Vance

The Return (Second Coming, #1) 2star

The Knights Templar are much more than a group of men with vague secrets. They are men of action. Men of power. And they have a purpose. They must safeguard the next coming of Christ. The time of the next coming has arrived and great evil stands in its way. The Templars must use all their training and power and influence to fight back against an enemy that has infiltrated the upper echelons of society and has inserted itself as a power player in politics, finance, and even the drug trade, all in preparation to thwart the prophecy that has yet to be fulfilled. Sarah and Peter Christos are the expectant parents of the next prophet and are wrapped up quickly in the Templar world. They have to fight not only for their lives, but for the life of their unborn child.

The Return is an impressive romp around the world. I thought at first that this book was going to be like The Da Vinci Code, but was pleasantly surprised to find that it’s more like Dan Brown meets Tom Clancy. Although, both aspects seem overtly contrived. While there is some interesting world history blended with fiction to the point where it’s hard to tell the two apart, other parts are a little too unbelievable. Example: At one point the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran gets a random visitor to his house. The man presents himself as a dead, but now resurrected, Imam from 800 years ago and the President accepts this with the guy basically saying ‘trust me, it’s me’ and the President proceeds to divulge some fairly important information to a person that just walked off the street (later it’s revealed that the man is not an Imam and is indeed a regular guy just trying to get information). Like the old order, the Templars’ in the book are a military order to its fullest realization. They’ve got secret military installations, tanker ships converted to mobile assault bases, fighter jets, and battalions of highly trained soldiers, but the weapons systems are a little too futuristic to fit into the Tom Clancy style of books and pushes the book into the science fiction genre; which is not necessarily a bad thing. While all the action and fighting and weapons were interesting what brought this book down a notch for me was that the whole book was delivered with a lack of basic literary devices. It’s not that these specific things are missing completely; it’s that the creative writing was missing from this very creative story. And instead the story is given in lines of facts; ‘he did this’, ‘she did that’, ‘they went over there’, and then a series of details of what a place looks like followed by a timeline of what happened. It’s unfair for me to say this book does it and none others do; it’s just that it’s more prominent in this story where other stories would cover it up with creative writing so you don’t really notice it. But back to my earlier statement; if you enjoy Tom Clancy-esque stories than this might be right up your alley, as the action and adventure take you on a wild ride around the world.

Pages: 317
Find out more about the author, Carter Vance at

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