The Bones of Odin: David Leadbeater

Book #1 in the ‘Matt Drake’ series.
Matt Drake is no stranger to risky situations. When he left the military & started doing photography, it appeared that he’d left danger behind him. He had no idea how wrong he was.
Covering a fashion show should-be been a cake assignment. Designer superstar, Abel Frey, has organized his show around an amazing archaeological find. Odin, better known as Thor’s dad, is the keystone of Norse Mythology. Recently, his shield was discovered. Shrouded in mystery & covered in runic designs, it’s a stunning piece. Legend says that it is the most important item of the Nine Pieces of Odin. These 9 pieces are said to be scattered, but once assembled, lead to the Tomb of the Gods (as in Zeus, Odin, etc.). That discovery will launch the Day of Reckoning.
As Matt’s camera snaps away, an elaborate heist takes place. The old SAS Officer in him kicks in. Granted, the shield is an incredible find, but he’s shocked that such a brazen crime has taken place. A direct threat uttered to MAtt by one of the armed men launches Matt headfirst into the craziest adventure he’s ever had.
Knowing little of Norse Mythology & knowing even less of why these people need the 9 Pieces, Matt will need every bit of training he’s ever had. Death & danger are around every turn. Not knowing who to trust, it seems every major country wants in on Odin’s treasures. Blurred lines between ‘good’ guys & ‘bad’ guys don’t make it easier either. It’s a true race against time to find the pieces before the wrong hands solve the mystery.
Matt Drake, part Indiana Jones & part James Bond, is the action figure that would be expected in a novel such as this one. Carrying an immense amount of emotional baggage with him, he struggles between being a military man & a civilian. Cynical & edgy, we still want him to win. His ‘team’ a NY cop who’s fallen from grace & a computer genius with a penchant for hard rock music keep Matt grounded. Both these supporting characters are well crafted & add tremendous human depth to Matt, who would otherwise come off as a human who believes he’s The Terminator.
While the author & I obviously disagree on theology, if one looks at the Odin story as simply a part of mythology without reading too much into it, it’s a very unique & original plot. Admittedly, my knowledge of Thor is limited to the ‘Avengers’ movies. Vikings are a fascinating civilization. However, I intellectually part ways with the author when he refers to Jesus as a ‘tale’ based on Odin. Jesus is neither a ‘tale’ nor ‘based’ on anyone.
That being said, David Leadbeater is a gifted author. ‘Bones’ is a great debut for this series- gripping and non-stop action. He skillfully weaves history-some legend, some factual-  throughout without it being out-of-place or boring. I plan on reading on provided that Christianity isn’t disparaged. If read in context, it’s a 4 star novel.

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