Cover Image: Marah Chase and the Conqueror's Tomb

Marah Chase and the Conqueror's Tomb

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Member Reviews

I love Indiana Jones and Lara Croft so this seemed like the perfect read for me, it sounded fun, full of action and like a rewarding romp across a few countries running away from the bad guys. Being honest it was actually all of these things but it didn't quite deliver in the way I expected it too. The story was good, the details great. It was completely over the top and required a little suspending of disbelief which I had no problem with at all. The bit that was lacking though, was that I didn't care what happened to any of the characters. Whether Marah or Mason (for the book is split almost equally between them) survived didn't really matter to me. There was nothing at all wrong with the descriptions, action sequences or any of that, it was just missing an intangible component that would have made it amazing. It was a good read, don't misunderstand, just lacking in something that I can't fully explain but that was not there at all, for me. For all of the action, peril and impossible stunts in planes it was all a bit flat.  It's a good read, definitely an escapist story if you want something quite different, and you may enjoy it more than I did, it definitely seems to be getting mixed reviews but unfortunately didn't quite live up to my expectations.
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If you like rip-roaring Tomb Raider style adventures, Marah Chase is the heroine you've been waiting for. Recruited by British Intelligence to find the tomb of Alexander the Great and a mysterious, powerful artefact it contains before a quasi-religious cult (obviously thinly based on Scientology, which cracked me up).

The action is non-stop and we get to meet quite a few characters from Marah's past, including her former mentor and her ex, as well as the attractive operative who recruits Marah and is a secondary protagonist in the story, Joanna Mason.

Oh, that's right. Didn't I mention that? Marah's an unabashed lesbian, just as happy to flirt with a pretty woman as James Bond. There's nothing more explicit in the story than a few kisses and closed-door bedroom scenes, but it's refreshing to see an LGBT story in this genre.

The book’s pacing was overall very good, some clever reveals coming at just the right moment; the only issue I had with it was that Chey Guerrera, a smuggler/pilot who is effectively Marah’s sidekick on the principal tomb raiding adventure, isn’t introduced until way too late in the story for the important role he ends up with. Nevertheless, this was a great story and I’d love to read further books in the series. Five stars.
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Was not able to finish this. Too many Indiana Jones' rip0ffs and incredulous happenings. I did not care about the characters, nor did I believe them capable of any of the actions taking place. Not my cup of tea at all.
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This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader.
Right after I finished Stringer's How to Kill Friends and Implicate People , I jumped onto NetGalley to request this -- despite being woefully behind on everything else (including NetGalley books!), curiosity prevailed. I had to know how Stringer would approach this particular premise and character.

What a fun, strange, ride! This is pure escapist entertainment. There's no message, there's no pondering foibles of contemporary society, there's no commentary on social ills (or celebration of social triumphs), just a wild and crazy story about a "renegade archeologist" and a spy battling a cult, a plot to take over the government, and historic artifacts that could easily change the course of civilization. (there is some pretty well-done character growth and development -- which grounds the lunacy a bit)

It's difficult -- at best -- to not mention the Pop Culture Icon that Marah Chase will remind readers of, and I've decided that I'm not up for difficult right now (after trying a few times). Marah Chase is essentially a contemporary, female Indiana Jones -- without the legitimate day job. Circumstances forced (well, forcefully encouraged) her to abandon the more scholarly, accepted archeology and to become a "relic runner" or "gold dog." Someone who finds historic, hard to find, artifacts and sells them to private collectors. It's hard to say just how successful she is at it -- enough to be a known figure throughout the Middle East (to people on both sides of the law), but not enough to get overly-choosy about what jobs she takes.

She's on the run from a group that pretends to be an arm of ISIS to cover up their criminal activities after scooping a treasure from their grasp when a British spy recruits her to go on the hunt for an artifact rumored to be a powerful weapon. I'll leave the details to Joanna Mason as she briefs Marah, but what's driving her to get Marah on the hunt is that she's convinced a powerful church has decided that a. the weapon is real and b. they are close to finding it. Marah's always been fascinated by the researcher they're basing their search on and she's in probably the best position to stop them before it's too late.

All she has to do is find the tomb of Alexander the Great -- a location that has stumped archeologists, treasure seekers, and zealots for centuries -- in the next few days. All she has to do is deal with white supremacist soldiers, faux-ISIS goons, a wealthy and powerful church, an ancient secret society, and worst of all, the granddaughter of the one man in history who may have found (and then covered-up) Alexander's tomb -- her ex.

Marah may be the star of the book -- and her name's in the title -- but don't think that Mason doesn't play as nearly vital a role in these events. While Marah's on the hunt for the tomb, Mason's trying to prevent a bloodless coup from within her own government, one that'll pave the way for the church to take over.

Both of these women seem to be the embodiment of an amped-up Murphy's Law -- If anything can go stunningly, horribly, mindbogglingly wrong, it will -- and usually will involve mortal danger, and then leave you in a worse (and more dangerous) predicament. I quickly stopped thinking that anything would work for either of them and just held my breath until things went from precarious to worse. It's a tribute to Stringer's imagination that he was able to keep that up for as long as he did.

Both Marah and Mason are surrounded by a great cast of characters -- enemies and allies alike. Honestly, either story line would've been enough to keep a novel going and be a lot of fun. You stick both of them together and you've got gold on your hands. I'm not sure this is the kind of story that invites in-depth analysis -- it's the kind of story that invites cheers, fist pumps, and would work best with a bowl of popcorn at your side.

For those looking for the Jay Stringer of the Sam Ireland books, they're going to be disappointed. For those looking for a Jay Stringer using his skills to create a new world, new voice with the same quality, they're in for a treat. His sense of humor is still evident, it just shows itself in different ways -- just as delightful, however. The banter between Marah and her smuggler friend is like catnip to me -- I could read it all day long. The action scenes, in particular, are outstanding -- there's one fight on board a plane that will . . . well, no, I'd better not.

Fast-paced, adrenaline-fueled, adventure with a couple of the most marvelous female protagonists you'll find this year -- Marah Chase and the Conqueror's Tomb is a guilt-free pleasure and a fantastic introduction to what had better be a long-running series.
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What a wild ride. This story was action packed from the beginning. It starts off with Marah Chase attempting to smuggle a priceless artifact out of Syria so it won’t be destroyed by a terrorist group. She makes a daring escape into Israel only to be coerced into helping MI6 find an ancient relic believed to be a weapon of mass destruction. It’s a race against time to find the weapon before a terrorist group gets it and uses it to upend the world as we know it. This story has everything a la Indiana Jones including espionage, archeological digs, political intrigue betrayal and evil empires, all the while being a terrific, modern globe trotting adventure.  I hope this becomes a series because it has a lot of potential. I really liked it and will read other works by this author. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for giving me an ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.  All opinions expressed are my own.
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The Indiana Jones comparisons are apt, but it's so much more. An action-packed blend of new world tech and politics with old world history and culture. Thoroughly enjoyed Marah Chase and look forward to more of her adventures.
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In Marah Chase and the Conquerors Tomb, Jay Stringer punches you right in the face with a giant boxing glove filled with action and adventure. Right from the gecko, he presents you with a well thought out novel. With helping after helping of historical facts and back story, he brings this exciting treasure hunting story alive with an abundance of thrills, close calls, and crazy twists that you may or may not have seen coming.

As you follow the main character, Marah Chase, around, you soon realize why she is the star of this novel. She's smart, beautiful, good with a gun, and a bit crazy. To some, this might leave her looking a bit rough around the edges. To me, this left an impression of her being the love child between Tom Cruises character Jack Reacher and Aileen Wuornos. She was more than enough to keep you glued to the pages just to see what trouble would walk into her life next.

Along this feat of relic hunting, she surrounds her self with a few colourful supporting characters. First of all, you have Zoe Forrester, brought up by money and a dysfunctional family, Joanna Mason who is probably just as sharp shooting with a firearm as Marah Chase, and Chuy Guerrero, who had the best lines in the story. I enjoyed this mixture of these protagonists as they swirled together like some type of romantic breakfast smoothie. They made the book, not only exciting but added the romantic flair to the plot here and there.

Out of the good guys, I felt Guerrero was one of the most enjoyable characters in the book as he brought a few smiles to my face with his comic relief. It would be awesome to read a whole novel of some of his adventures.

Just like every book, if there is a good guy, there is a bad guy. This book didn't fall short and had some pretty ruthless protagonist. Out of all of them, I found Parish to be the evilest of them all. Jay Stringer hit the nail right on the head when he made this character as he made him into somebody that you wanted to slap silly if you ever saw him in the street.

One thing that I didn't like about the story was that there were too many factions. This could have just been me, but I had to keep it sorted on who belonged to what faction.

Overall, this book is fast paced, exciting, and filled for thrills. The story of the search for Alexander the Great's tomb and the might Aten was a well worth read. If you are a devoted fan of finding lost treasure and a slew of danger that goes with it, give this book a try. Especially if you enjoy reading authors like James Rollins, Steven Berry, or Matthew Reilly. 

I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Marah Chase and the Conqueror's Tomb by Jay Stringer. a fast paced action packed book. Read well and quickly, simply didn't live up to my expectations. Wasn't for me, thank you for giving me a chance with this book.
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