Crimson Shore, by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (Grand Central Publishing, November 2015). First few lines:
When the doorbell chimed, Constance Greene stopped playing the Flemish virginal and the library fell silent and tense. She glanced in the direction of Special Agent A. X. L. Pendergast, sitting by a dying fire, wearing thin white gloves, having gone quite still while leafing through an illuminated manuscript, a glass of Amontillado half-finished on the side table. Constance recalled the last time someone rang the doorbell at 891 Riverside Drive -- the rarest of occurrences at the Pendergast mansion. The memory of that awful moment now hung in the room like a miasma.Initial Thoughts:
Well, the Flemish virginal caught my attention right away. Who plays a Flemish virginal in the modern world? Who even knows what a Flemish virginal is? Also, that mention of Amontillado has me thinking there's bound to be a connection with Edgar Allan Poe somewhere along the line, and I love that. And then there's an illuminated manuscript, right? OK, they've definitely got me interested.
But I've read several of Preston/Child's "Pendergast" novels (this one is #15 in the series), and I've come to expect that sort of appealingly arcane detail. Also lots of action, convoluted plots, and a fascinating protagonist in Special Agent Pendergast. So I've been quite looking forward to getting started on this one. Of course, at just over 460 pages, it's a book I'm likely to be reading for quite a while.
So, what say you? Does this one sound like it's worth all that reading time?
Rose City Reader hosts Book Beginnings on Fridays. As she says, the idea is to post the first sentence (or so) of the book you're currently reading, along with any first impressions or thoughts you have about the book, the author, etc. It's a wonderful way of adding new books to your must-read list, and a chance to connect with other readers and bloggers.