The discovery of ancient tomes with magical power seems to be a subgenre of its own. In this short audiobook of Anne Perry’s mystery The Scroll, an old vellum manuscript is uncovered by a bookseller. In a classic British accent that seems to roll along a gravel road, Alan Robertson relates the mysterious properties of the scroll and the horror it seems to summon. Strange characters and powerful forces seek possession of this seeming relic, and one man’s courage and nerve is tested. At just over an hour’s running length, The Scroll is for those who like a little shot of the willies before bedtime.
Short tales about deadly books, by top mystery authors
An ancient scroll draws a bookseller into a chilling mystery.
Monty Danforth finds the tin buried beneath a shipment of leather-bound classics. Inside is a millennia-old vellum manuscript written in an unfamiliar but unmistakably ancient language. Danforth tries to photocopy and photograph it, but he ends up with blank images, as though the ink were made of something impervious to modern technology. As the scroll’s mystery enchants him, this hapless bookseller falls into a cutthroat conspiracy that he may never escape.
Soon a dead-eyed old man and his granddaughter come calling for the scroll. Danforth refuses to sell them the manuscript, but they will not be the last to demand it. Powerful forces crave the secrets locked within this ancient document, and Danforth will survive only if he can master its power.
I have read several of the various bibliomysteries. Each is by a different famous author. I have enjoyed every single one of them. This one is by far the best. Due to medical issues with my eyes I am on medical orders to listen to audio books instead of reading books. This is the only one I have listened to being narrated.
I have read Anne Perry's books almost from the very start of her publishing career. I have read Thomas and Charlotte Pitt mysteries, William Monk mysteries, her WW1 novels, her Christmas novellas, and one other short story by Anne Perry (a very memorable short mystery in which she wrote herself in as one of the characters, as well as her mother, all the pets and domestic animals in the area where she lived, and in which the animals solved the mystery). So, I am acquainted with the full variety of her published work. This (as well as the animal short mystery) is quite different from her other work, and yet it too, is marked by her distinctive style. I know of the tragic event that marked her teenage years. This is a woman who writes of good and evil in all of her novels, with knowledge from her very soul.
What makes this one the best I have read so far? It is very eerie (I think E.A. Poe would have liked it) and, actually, I do not like eerie fiction or TV or movies normally. Yet, even though this is way beyond the weirdness I can normally tolerate, I liked it. I liked Monty and his friend, Hank. Monty finds himself on the horns of a dilemma, a very uncomfortable spot and a very uncommon spot too. Unlike some of the readers who have reviewed this bibliomystery (see book reviews on Amazon.com), I did not find the end unsatisfying. Anything more would have been too much. I liked that the plot was thought-provoking; I do not remember any of the other bibliomysteries I have read being as thought-provoking as this one is. Once you finished the others, they were completely over and done, nothing to spur the reader on to further thought. Further thought is a good and often rare thing.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Short story that could be a really great paranormal novel if the author deems it to be so. I enjoyed this.