Reality and the supernatural collide when an expert puzzle maker is thrust into an ancient mystery—one with explosive consequences for the fate of humanity—in this suspenseful thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of Angelology
“This novel has it all and more. In the nimble, talented hands of Trussoni the pages fly.”—#1 New York Times bestselling author David Baldacci
A WASHINGTON POST AND POPSUGAR BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
All the world is a puzzle, and Mike Brink—a celebrated and ingenious puzzle constructor—understands its patterns like no one else. Once a promising Midwestern football star, Brink was transformed by a traumatic brain injury that caused a rare medical condition: acquired savant syndrome. The injury left him with a mental superpower—he can solve puzzles in ways ordinary people can’t. But it also left him deeply isolated, unable to fully connect with other people.
Everything changes after Brink meets Jess Price, a woman serving thirty years in prison for murder who hasn’t spoken a word since her arrest five years before. When Price draws a perplexing puzzle, her psychiatrist believes it will explain her crime and calls Brink to solve it. What begins as a desire to crack an alluring cipher quickly morphs into an obsession with Price herself. She soon reveals that there is something more urgent, and more dangerous, behind her silence, thrusting Brink into a hunt for the truth.
The quest takes Brink through a series of interlocking enigmas, but the heart of the mystery is the God Puzzle, a cryptic ancient prayer circle created by the thirteenth-century Jewish mystic Abraham Abulafia. As Brink navigates a maze of clues, and his emotional entanglement with Price becomes more intense, he realizes that there are powerful forces at work that he cannot escape.
Ranging from an upstate New York women’s prison to nineteenth-century Prague to the secret rooms of the Pierpont Morgan Library, The Puzzle Master is a tantalizing, addictive thriller in which humankind, technology, and the future of the universe itself are at stake.
Trussoni (The Ancestor) blends the cerebral and the supernatural in this impressive thriller that sees renowned puzzlist Mike Brink drawn into a mystery with ancient roots. A high school football injury left Brink with sudden acquired savant syndrome, in his case granting him synesthesia and a remarkable ability to see patterns. Jess Price, once a promising novelist, was convicted years ago of murdering her boyfriend in Upstate New York. She has remained uncommunicative since, until she draws a puzzle and requests that her prison psychologist employ Mike's help to solve it. Soon, Mike learns there's something more sinister behind Jess's silence than the murder conviction, and he winds up on the run, scrambling to solve her puzzle and stumbling into questions of Judeo-Christian mysticism. Meanwhile, he garners the attention of billionaire Jameson Sedge, "part of an underground collective of futurists and trans-humanists who believed that ancient esoteric methods could be combined with technology to create eternal life." For a brilliant guy, Mike makes some dumb fumbles (it's common knowledge that one can be tracked by their phone), but his puzzle-solving skills impress. Fans of Dan Brown's Robert Langdon novels would do well to pick this up.
The early premise of this book was strong, but what followed was mumbo-jumbo hogwash; a well-written waste of time. I wish I had stopped the moment I felt it veering off the rails.