Editorial Review: The Magdalene Deception by Gary McAvoy
The last thing a Jesuit priest named Michael Dominic expected when he started working at the Secret Archives of the Vatican was to chance upon a hidden papyrus that could change the fate of Christianity forever. The Magdalene Deception is a book that effortlessly sucks in readers right from the start with compelling characters and an intriguing premise.
Michael is aware of the importance of this document when he discovers it, but it isn’t until he teams up with an investigative reporter named Hana Sinclair that the pair uncovers its true significance. However, their discovery also places them in the crosshairs of those who would stop at nothing to ensure the truth is never made public.
Michael Dominic is not an action hero, just an ordinary priest who stumbles across something far beyond what he ever expected. He is also not infallible and makes plenty of mistakes while trying to figure out what he has uncovered and how to proceed with the information. It is his curiosity and doubts, along with plenty of charm, that makes Michael such a likable character. The same goes for Hana who could have ended up being the typical cliched reporter. Instead, she comes across as very driven and the way in which she teams up with Michael makes sense. Too many thrillers rely on implausible situations or wild coincidences to keep up the tension, but Gary McAvoy manages to pull it off expertly thanks to meticulous research and an eye for detail.
The book could easily have ended up a confusing mess as it deals with everything from Nazis and the Holocaust to the resurrection of Jesus and corruption within the Vatican, but McAvoy made sure that the story doesn’t falter for a second. Every chapter is written in a way that draws the reader deeper into the story and the tension ramps up nicely as the stakes continue to get higher. The other great thing about The Magdalene Deception is that it isn’t filled with any superfluous characters. Every person who Michael and Hana interact with is there for a reason and a few of them are hiding some startling secrets of their own. However, this isn’t a Hollywood blockbuster-style thriller with explosions and car chases, which is a good thing. By keeping everything grounded in reality McAvoy has crafted a story that is as believable as it is engrossing. This doesn’t mean that the story is plodding either as the author has a knack for keeping things concise and keeping the story moving at all times.
Since The Magdalene Deception deals with religious concepts that might be offensive to some readers it’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea. However, McAvoy handles these sensitive aspects with a lot of respect and the story never feels like it is shocking simply for the sake of being shocking. A lot of this is due to the amount of research that has clearly gone into this novel as it really shines through.
Overall, The Magdalene Deception is a thrilling read and offers a compelling story that is resolved in style. The characters are well written and even the villains are interesting as they are more than just the evil caricatures found in many other books. Michael and Hana make a great team as well, so hopefully, this won’t be the last time they team up for an adventure.
If you are a fan of thrillers or simply love reading novels that mixes historical facts with absorbing fiction you won’t be disappointed with The Magdalene Deception