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Review of 'The Venus Conspiracy' a novel by Michael Cordy.
I am reviewing the paperback version of this novel, ISBN 0552148830, published by Corgi Books, 464 pages, cover price £6.99, Genre:- Thriller.
The book is currently available from www.amazon.co.uk for £5.49 new or from 0.01p used.
A fairly short prologue consisting of just 8 or 9 pages. This is a dark and sinister glimpse into the terror of Max, a nine year old boy who, with his mother is being hunted down. The boy and his mother are caught one night and taken on board a yacht. Max is then forced to witness his mother being killed by drowning as she is thrown overboard. He dives into the water after her and tries desperately to save her to no avail. When he is heaved back onto the boat deck, he is told that he must never show emotion or pain again.
Professor Carlos Bacci inadvertently unlocks the biological key to falling in love. He develops a drug capable of recreating emotions which are indistinguishable from the real thing. Bacci is a naive, yet brilliant man who feels that his miracle drug should be used to benefit mankind and could create harmony and love in the troubled world. His research is expensive however and he struggles to continue his work, eventually he seeks funding and business advice from a private Swiss bank owned by the secretive and powerful Kappel family.
The head of the Kappel family, Helmut, sees love as a weak emotion to be exploited and unknown to Professor Bacci, he has his own plans for the wonder drug. Funding is approved with certain provisos, leaving Bacci able to continue in his work.
Little does the well meaning Professor realise that Helmut Kappel is a ruthless and arrogant man who will stop at nothing, even murder, to attain his own ends. The plot twists and turns through the storyline as we see Kappel using everyone around him, including his own flesh and blood in his quest to achieve his goals.
About the Author
British author Cordy was born in Ghana and spent much of his childhood in East and West Africa. On his return to the United Kingdom, he was educated at King's School, Canterbury and then attended Leicester and Durham universities. Following a career in marketing, Michael Cordy decided with the backing of his wife, Jenny to turn his back on his career and follow his dream of becoming an author. His first novel, 'The Miracle Strain', followed two years later. This book was controversial, dealing with the DNA of Christ. Michael Cordy's writing has been compared to that of Dan Brown and Michael Crichton.
The author has produce 5 novels in total with a sixth currently in progress. He lives in London with his wife and daughter.
**My source for the above information was the author's website www.michaelcordy.com
My Thoughts and Conclusion
The Venus Conspiracy starts off as a fast paced thriller, but later descends into a romance of sorts along the way. The plot is complex and twists and turns through the rise and fall of certain characters. I felt the author had put a great deal of work into his story line and the plot fairly skips along. The Venus Conspiracy has well developed, believable characters in my opinion. I do feel that the writing style is similar to that of Dan Brown and the author is not afraid to confront deep emotive issues in order to produce a cracking thriller with a good deal of human interest too. . The Bad
This novel was a huge disappointment for me. In part I admit that this was my own fault. I have read several of the author's novels before and enjoyed them very much, so when I spotted The Venus Conspiracy in the reduced section of a bookshop recently, I snatched it up without really reading the book 'blurb'.
Had I done so, I would have seen the warning that this book is in fact the novel 'True' republished under a new title! It became apparent after I had read a few pages that I had read this novel sometime previously.
I cannot altogether approve of this practise and I felt somewhat cheated, however, as previously stated I did not really read the back of the book so it was my own fault!
In spite of the comments above, I would re-read this novel. I did enjoy the story and felt the characters, storyline and outcome were excellent. It is a well crafted novel and I would recommend it to others, just as long as they haven't already read 'True' by the same author!