Book review: ‘The Lost Key’ is compelling thriller

Jeff Ayers
Associated Press

A sub that disappeared near the end of World War I plays a key role in a modern-day murder in Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison’s “The Lost Key.”

Nicholas Drummond has left his job with British intelligence and is now an FBI agent. He’s teamed with female agent Mike Caine, and they are summoned to the scene of a murder on Wall Street. The victim is a bookstore owner who specialized in rare books, but as Drummond and Caine dig deeper, they learn he had a secret identity and was known in some circles as The Messenger. They stumble on the perpetrator, and during the ensuing chase, Drummond accidentally triggers a mechanism inside the man’s mouth that causes him to die from poison.

Then a ruthless villain seeks the aid of a hacker, who happens to be the victim’s son. If his bold plan succeeds, he will access a deadly weapon hidden from the world in a sub lost during the final days of WWI.

“The Lost Key” is a terrific follow-up to Coulter and Ellison’s previous novel, “The Final Cut.” The authors juggle marvelous action with stellar character development and intriguing history to spin another great tale. Both are excellent writers, but together, they are in another league.

“The Lost Key”

by Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison