Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Fragment

I read this novel by Davis Bunn for a book group. It is a satisfactory, quick read. Muriel Ross, an amateur photographer and professional historian specializing in reliquaries, finds herself in Paris with an old family friend, Senator Thomas Bryan, after the Great War (World War I). She is there at his behest to photograph a piece of the True Cross of Christ held in a reliquary at Notre Dame Cathedral and possibly to authenticate another piece rumored to be in Constantinople. It is a dangerous job, for the Ottoman Empire is falling, and others want the reliquary.

This is a historical novel and the history is well woven into the storyline. I really enjoyed reading about Paris in the 1920s and about Atatürk and his conquest of the Ottoman Empire despite the West's plans and their puppet caliph. It even mentioned the name change from Constantinople to Istanbul. An interesting read.

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