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The scenes set in Lebanon are atmospheric, and the author catches well the febrile aura of that beautiful and troubled country. Khoury is a screenwriter and the novel’s tight construction and hyper-fast pacing owe an obvious debt to that discipline. Comparisons with Dan Brown are inevitable but, in truth, Khoury is a much better writer. Overall, the book delivers a high-octane rollercoaster ride of thrills and spills.

Hugh Bonar, The Irish Mail on Sunday on The Sanctuary