‘The Scorpion’s Tail‘ by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child is a 2021 mystery thriller that brings back the authors’ characters of FBI rookie Corrie Swanson and archaeologist Nora Kelly for a second story.
In a remote New Mexico ghost town, a shootout between a sheriff and a thief trying to loot artifacts leads to the discovery of a mummified body in the town’s ruins.
Rookie FBI Agent Corrie Swanson is called in to ID the body and determine the cause of death. She brings along Santa Fe archaeologist Nora Kelly to excavate the body and lend her expertise to the investigation.
What was promised to Nora as a quick one day job becomes a multi-week adventure as what she unearths with the body is a 16th century Spanish gold cross of immense value.
This attracts more than the attention of looters as Corrie finds herself meeting resistance everywhere she follows the clues. This includes butting heads with her boss, as well as a General on a nearby army base that also happens to be the site of the first atomic bomb test…and home to a rumored lost treasure from the time of the cross.
It will take every ounce of resourcefulness and ingenuity these women have to solve both the current case and the two ancient mysteries that intertwine it.
Of course it wouldn’t be a Preston & Child novel without an appearance of their famous Agent Pendergast, who also happens to be Corrie’s mentor, and he provides a bit of wrap up assistance at the end.
This is the second outing for the duo of Corrie and Nora, following 2020’s ‘Old Bones,’ and they continue to balance each other out well. Sometimes Corrie seems a little too green to be going out on her own, however she also has a way of looking at a case differently that gets results.
I loved the relationship between Nora and her brother Skip – I could read a whole adventure of just those two. On the other hand, I was put off by the way they wrapped up the storyline of the General’s assistant.
I’m giving ‘The Scorpion’s Tail‘ by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child 4 stars out of 5. It’s a can’t-put-down kind of read, and I enjoyed the weaving in of historical data and Native American rituals, as well.
Zengrrl’s Book Review: Old Bones by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
Disclaimer: I received an advance e-book copy for review purposes from NetGalley. I was not compensated in any other way. My opinion is honest, and as always, my own.
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Tagged: book review, Corrie Swanson, Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child, mystery books, Nora Kelly, The Scorpion's Tail, thriller books