About to depart on his first vacation in years, Edward Wozny, a hot-shot young investment banker, is sent to help one of his firm's most important and mysterious clients. When asked to uncrate and organize a personal library of rare books, Edward's indignation turns to intrigue as he realizes that there may be a unique medieval codex hidden among the volumes, a treasure kept locked away for many years and for many reasons. As friends draw Edward into a peculiar and addictive computer game, his obsession deepens as he discovers surprising parallels between the game's virtual reality and the mystery of the codex. An accomplished and entertaining thriller, Codex explores the mysterious power of books in the medieval and modern ages.
A young investment banker burrows deep into a labyrinthine world of computer games and literary riddles in this captivating thriller by Time book critic Grossman (Warp). On a two-week vacation before he heads for a new post in London, 25-year-old golden boy Edward Wozny volunteers his services to the Wents, the duchess and duke of Bowmry, two of the firm's biggest clients. Since he assumes they require his financial expertise, he is exasperated and then intrigued to discover they wish him to catalogue a collection of ancient books in the attic of their New York apartment. Captivated by the library of rare manuscripts, Edward finds himself oddly content in this mystifying world of words. A special request adds extra urgency to the assignment: he is asked to find a possibly mythical codex by 14th-century monk Gervase of Langford, A Viage to the Contree of the Cimmerians. Most scholars believe that the text which predicts the coming of the apocalypse and may conceal Went family secrets never existed, and that view is shared by Margaret Napier, a hard-nosed graduate student whom Edward enlists to aid him in his daunting task. Fixated on locating the codex, Edward becomes equally preoccupied with MOMUS, an intricate, frighteningly vivid computer game. Cyberworld and real world are more connected than Edward realizes, and he gradually discovers that the game is intimately related to his literary sleuthing. A trip to England and a well-orchestrated final twist bring this intelligent, enjoyable novel to a fittingly understated conclusion. Author appearances in Boston, New York and Washington, D.C.
Codex - A review
This is a strangely difficult review to write, strange because I feel somewhat - if not exactly like - the central character of the story, Edward. It's 6am and I've been awake all night reading endlessly, wanting to know how it will all turn out. I feel as if I too, played a confusing video game where I was unsure of either the rules or the point; as if I've been on a transatlantic flight and have that slightly drunk, unwell feeling of too little sleep and suffering from dehydration. It's like someone has changed the rules mid-play and I've lost and yet in some way won, yet am not happy with what I've won. I've made the wrong choices, but yet, I still must go on living my life because what other choice is there? I've become Edward against my will - as though I've been playing him in a video game and I couldn't get him to make the right choices, so here I am, at the end of it, utterly exhausted. Talk about becoming one with the character! This book will definitely take you for a ride and hold you transfixed - just don't expect to be sure how you feel at the end of it! That being said, it had to be extremely well played to do that to you!? Sheepish grin inserted here.
Didn't much care for this book.
The story was passable, but I couldn't relate to the characters or their dilemmas. Rich, power-driven twenty-something...obsessive scholarly grad student, textbook nerds... Give me a break! Who cares?
This is a really terrible book.