Vernicious Knids

Random musings and snapshots about life, love, travel and everything in between...

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The "Russian" Dan Brown?

Steve Berry may very well be the next Dan Brown.
In fact, Dan says "Writes with the self-assured style of a veteran."

I recently read his 2nd (written first but published second!) novel The Romanov Prophecy:

(Book image from

It's fast paced and full of interesting characters like Rasputin, the mad Siberian monk, Felix Yussoupov, a cross-dressing noble, and of course the Romanovs themselves:

(Photo from here)

It's set in the present day in Russia, mainly Moscow & St Petersburg, and the USA and is basically a non-stop chase, involving violence, corruption, death, the mafiya, prophecy deciphering, borzois and snippets of Russian history. All your basic thriller ingredients! It's definitely not a piece of literature, but is an enjoyable romp nevertheless.

Interestingly, it took Berry 12 years to get published but he now has 4 books on the market (The Amber Room, The Romanov Prophecy, The Third Secret and The Templar Legacy) with another 3 due in the next 3 years.
Perseverance really does pay off!
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  • At 12:10 am, Blogger Carolyn said…

    I'll take an enjoyable romp over literature any day.

    And I got firsties! Woo-hoo.

  • At 6:04 am, Blogger My float said…

    Hey VK, did you know that the guy who wrote Wicked has a new(ish) follow-up novel called Son of a Witch? Borrowed it from the library recently but I've forgotten parts of Wicked, and i think i probably need to go back and re-read the first.

    Anyway, just letting you know. The Romanov Prophecy looks interesting! Will look for it next.

  • At 9:50 am, Blogger Michelle said…

    Thanks for the kind words on my blog! Winning the Extreme Makeover's the best thing that's happened to me in years! Be sure to check back this weekend for my "after" pictures!

    Take care!

  • At 11:15 am, Blogger verniciousknids said…

    Carolyn: Sometimes a romp is just what's needed, hey! Yay for you being first :D

    MF: I'd heard about it any good? Elphaba was such a great character. After reading "Wicked" I watched "The Wizard of Oz" and I had completely different feelings about the Wicked Witch characters! And I really miss being able to borrow books from libraries...the small English section in our library has already been devoured by me...thank goodness for Amazon Japan :D

    Michelle: Thanks for the reminder, I'll be sure to do so! Good luck.

  • At 11:49 am, Blogger Elsa said…

    The book sounds really good. I enjoy these kind of historical thrillers - you learn a little something while on the edge of your seat!

  • At 1:24 pm, Blogger My float said…

    VK, to be honest, I got through the first couple of chapters and thought, I just could not remember Wicked. I think you really need to read or at least skim through Wicked first to put you in the mood. There was a big emphasis on knowing who Elphaba was, and why she was the way she was, and I just haven't retained all that, given I read it over a year ago! (So many books, so little time!) So if you're asking would I recommend it, um, no. But only because of the reason I mentioned. Then again it may well be the best book ever written!

  • At 8:20 pm, Blogger Helen said…

    I love the Dan Brown books so might give this one a go to - thanks for the tip! Helen

  • At 10:50 pm, Blogger verniciousknids said…

    Elsa: I thought you may appreciate having an additional 4 books to add to your wishlist ;)

    MF: That's a bit of a pain having to read 2 books to understand 1...who has the time for this nowadays?! I'll save this one for a holiday then...thanks for the tip :D

    Helen: If you liked DB then you'll definitely enjoy Berry! Is it difficult (i.e. expensive) getting English language books in Sweden?!

  • At 11:20 pm, Blogger Karen said…

    Thanks for the reading recommendation! I'm currently working my way through "Running With Scissors" which is VERY disturbing. I'll need something light after this!

    Michele sent me and I'm glad. Happy Thursday or whatever day it is over there!

  • At 11:53 pm, Blogger verniciousknids said…

    Karen: It's still Thursday least for another 10 mins or so! Thanks for visiting.

  • At 12:01 am, Blogger kristen said…

    ooh - this sounds like a very fascinating book!
    and, i love your blog name!! L.O.V.E. it!

    michele sent me today and i'm delighted she did!

  • At 12:04 am, Blogger ribbiticus said…

    whoa! thanks for the heads up! will be sure to look for this when i get to a bookstore. ;)

  • At 3:57 am, Blogger Bearette24 said…

    i agree with my float re "son of a witch" - i just could not get into it. it was too dense and required too detailed a recall of "wicked".

  • At 11:45 am, Blogger verniciousknids said…

    Kristen: Thanks for your kind words and welcome!

    Ribbiticus: I've been having problems loading your page recently...I'll keep trying!

    Bearette: Actually, I think I remember you saying something like this when I posted about "Confessions". It's a shame his other works haven't been as satisfying as "Wicked"!

  • At 10:17 pm, Anonymous Antonia said…

    I will have to look out for this one. How many books do you read in a year?

  • At 11:01 pm, Blogger verniciousknids said…

    Antonia: I'm not really sure, I've never counted...a lot!

  • At 9:16 am, Blogger Robin said…

    I read a big huge Tome on the Romanovs in 6th or 7th was good for about 3 reports in different subjects...always had a fascination with them! This looks good, going to put it on my wishlist!

  • At 8:46 pm, Blogger verniciousknids said…

    Robin: They are an intriguing family - enjoy the book!

  • At 11:42 pm, Blogger EuroTrippen said…

    I've read The Romanov Prophecy & Templar Legacy and really liked both. I'd say he's better than Dan Brown as all of his novels seem more or less the same to me.

    I loved factual events woven into fiction. It's really a genre unto itself. Robert Harris is another great one for that.


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