Sep 29, 2009: Delta Flight is a web serial novel with a Davinci Code feel that caught my eye right away, then again, I am a big fan of supernatural historical horror novels and religious conspiracy theories. The downside is that only 3 installments have been published so far, but the author publishes weekly. He is very adept at writing gripping endings to each chapter that keep you coming back for more.
Chapter 1 opens up with an eerie Biblical quote that foreshadows what I am guessing is life after death – resurrection of some sort. My first instinct is to think zombie-novel. But it doesn’t have that feel when you read on. It starts out with a group of special forces operatives killing a group of terrorists on the steps of a church in Rome. The special forces group is teamed up with an archaeologist / journalist who reminds me of Christopher Hitchens for some reason.
It appears they are on a mission to find a priest that had already been killed – again another zombie foreshadowing, along with an ancient artifact that is very important to senior White House officials. Terrorists hanging out in Vatican City piqued my interest. What is even more intriguing is that the church was built on the same grounds where the evil emperor Nero was buried, and is supposedly haunted by him. The Chapter ends with the main characters descending into underground catacombs below the church.
Chapter 2 switches gears to a graveyard near the Chickamauga Civil War battlefield in Georgia. Two detectives who remind me of something right out of the X-files are investigating alleged supernatural phenoma including sightings of a man who had died recently. They dig up the man’s tomb and its empty. They also chase the dead man’s son who commits suicide in front of them, and they find a symbol carved into his palm that resembles the symbol on the artifact that the special forces team was looking for.
In chapter 3 we sit in on dialogue between a Pentagon official and a military commander in charge of the mission in Rome. This chapter is intended for exposition purposes, as we get to meet each team member of "Delta Black" – which is supposed to be an elite-of-the-elite Delta force squadron. We are then left hanging when it is disclosed that the team must find the ancient artifact because it has the power to conquer death.
Some parts of the author’s writing seems a bit stilted, and although he overdoes some of the southern accents, its a very smooth and easy read, not to mention entertaining. Some of the characters are somewhat shallow at this point but a few of them are extremely interesting, especially Detective Tom Septer in chapter 2, who is bitterly sarcastic and a bipolar alcoholic – lots of fun.
I would recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys riveting mysterious plots about the Catholic Church and the apocalypse.
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