Richard H Rees' The
Reikel Conspiracy is a well-crafted tale for fans of conspiracy with
sophisticated characters and a complex plot. New York Detective, Michael
Callaghan, and his estranged wife, Colleen, are investigating two murders
committed in New York. Across the Atlantic, they pursue one of the ruthless
fraudsters to have existed, the brain behind the ''Tweed Ring,'' a man
who has left New York with $200 million. Their investigation and pursuit of
revenge quickly get them enmeshed in a dangerous game of deceit involving a
powerful Sicilian mafia. Meanwhile, Pierre Beckx, Father-General of the
Jesuits, conceives a plot to restore the Church of Rome, with a puppet pope.
But what has anything to do with the mystery of the American brigantine Mary
Celeste, an abandoned vessel that left New York to Genoa and that was found
with neither crew nor captain in 1872?
This is a slow burn with as many twists and unexpected turns as can be hoped for in this genre. The narrative features a compelling voice and characters that are likable. A simple murder investigation morphs into a rollicking ride to uncover a conspiracy linked to an abandoned ship, a tale with powerful historical hints. Richard H Rees' is beautiful, punctuated by engaging dialogues. The descriptions are cinematic, and the author succeeds in delivering an epic tale that is packed with plot twists. It is fierce and the author has the gift for writing small interactions with care, allowing the story to be permeated by humanity and realism. While I found this book lengthy, it is the author's ability to keep readers guessing that had me turning the pages. In turn, a spellbinding mystery and a conspiracy that feels like history.