After finding the queen’s jewels on the Farnese’s wreck, Buck Reilly is prepared to explore new, altruistic endeavors. Unfortunately, his objectives are jeopardized by a new development involving the federal government interfering with his newly discovered fortune and the secrets he intends to keep concealed. Buck is left with little money and many court challenges, prompting him to embark on another treasure hunt that appears to be a wild goose chase with coded language, biblical texts, and incomplete material dating back to the 1800s.
His goal entails tracking down the rumored buried cache of Key West’s original owner, John W. Simonton. However, he must compete with the most vicious treasure hunters who are pursuing the same treasure. Are Buck’s archeology and puzzle-solving abilities sufficient to save him from the hangman’s noose that is quickly closing in on him? In John H. Cunningham’s Purple Deceiver, follow Buck’s highly perilous and suspense-filled race to discover a long-buried treasure while surrounded by ruthless competitors and relentless law enforcement entities.
I’m not sure which element of the novel I enjoyed more—the pleasure and excitement of searching for the treasure or the tension of the danger around the protagonist. I just knew that I couldn’t give anything else my full attention until I finished the book. I was on edge throughout the novel because I didn’t know when another sinister and intimidating character would attack the protagonist or when another layer of knowledge or a secret would be divulged to the authorities. Deciphering Bible verses and skillfully coded messages further piqued my interest and made me want to work on more puzzles with the protagonist.
John H. Cunningham presents a well-rounded tale with a pace that is neither too quick nor too slow. Thanks to the protagonist’s perceptive personality and the colorful characters who emerge throughout the book, the novel is full of relatable and interesting insights like “Scarlet had an annoying ability to always appear calm.” There’s also a lot to keep readers interested in the story, including an introspective and likable protagonist, deadly villains, sexual tension, intricate riddles, and more.
Fans of treasure hunt stories and readers who enjoy tales with clever riddles and terrifying antagonists will enjoy this book. I’m just discovering the Buck Reilly Adventures series, and I can’t wait to read more. You don’t have to have read the previous installments to enjoy this one, but once you do, you won’t be able to resist the temptation. Excellent work, John. Life seems like an exciting trip when you’re surrounded by literary classics like this!
|John H. Cunningham
|Greene Street, LLC
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