by Bruce TierneyDecember, 2002
On the trail of a smear campaign
Starving artist Danny Cray, protagonist of John Case's latest novel The Eighth Day, supplements his limited income by doing part-time private investigative work for a Washington, D.C., agency. At 26, his art career seems stalled, a situation exacerbated by the screaming financial success of his portfolio manager girlfriend. So, when he is offered a job investigating a smear campaign against a reclusive billionaire, Danny jumps at the chance for some instant cash gratification. Before he is done, the strange case will lead him to the Vatican library, then to Istanbul, then to a labyrinthine ancient city in the east of Turkey. As the journey unfolds, however, Danny begins to realize that the "smear campaign" he was hired to expose is but a tiny piece of a deeper conspiracy involving religious zealots, high tech espionage and murder. Some writers excel at character development, some are superb wordsmiths; John Case is all about pace. It's as if the word "relentless" were invented just for him. Readers of John Grisham, James Patterson and Robert Ludlum will find Case right up their alley.