Book review: 'Finding Sheba' an energetic Middle Eastern thriller

Published: Saturday, Nov. 16 2013 12:00 p.m. MST

"Finding Sheba" is a thriller by H.B. Moore. (Provided by H.B. Moore)

"FINDING SHEBA: An Omar Zagouri Thriller," by H.B. Moore, Stonehouse Ink, $14.99, 444 pages (f)

Heather Moore’s latest project has created something completely new for her readers. Her previous works have involved romantic stories and faith-centered scriptural novels.

However, “Finding Sheba,” Moore’s newest book, pulls readers into the heated Middle Eastern world of monarchs, tombs and antiquities.

Following the death of Dr. Lyon, her beloved mentor, Jade, an American student working on her master’s thesis, journeys to Egypt to continue the research the two had conducted involving the elusive and famed queen of Sheba. Jade meets up with Lyon’s associate, Lucas, who hints that Lyon’s death may have been murder.

H.B. Moore is the author of H.B. Moore is the author of "Finding Sheba". (Provided by H.B. Moore)

Meanwhile, secret agent Omar Zagouri narrowly escapes death and capture at the site of a newly discovered sepulchre. As he pursues evidence of a deeper plot involving the burial site of a powerful queen, he begins to realize that the fate of nations could be tied to her hidden tomb.

Tensions are strained when Omar is accidentally partnered with his former flame, Mia, and the two become entrenched in the search for answers. As they fight for their lives, Mia and Omar’s mission collides with Jade and Lucas’ expedition, drawing the foursome into a struggle for survival and a race to preserve the past.

Moore’s book is a well-researched and well-written scramble through modern and ancient worlds. The contemporary characters sprint through the desert lands of Yemen, Jerusalem and Arabia while in search of the ancient sovereign, the queen of Sheba. The descriptive nature of this romp brings home the heat and mystery of the region to the reader.

While the book is billed as an Omar Zagouri thriller, the other characters play major roles in the story as well. Jade and Lucas are endearing and sweet, adding a deeper appeal to the tale. The banter between Omar and Mia feels almost forced at times, but their connection still holds strong.

The story itself runs through realms of modern and ancient betrayal, romance and intrigue, leading readers into a captivating tale. While some pieces of the story are based on biblical accounts, this is in no way a religious book. The story spins with lust, deceit, ritualistic human sacrifice and murder, and though there are references to sexual moments and violent acts, there is no vivid description or graphic explanation of them.

“Finding Sheba” is a fast-paced historical drama that will likely leave fans hoping for another Omar Zagouri adventure in the future.

Melissa DeMoux is a stay-at-home mother of six young children who lives in West Valley City, Utah. Her email is mddemoux@gmail.com and she blogs about her adventures in motherhood at demouxfamily.blogspot.com.

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