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Reviewed by Steve Lindahl for Readers' Favorite
The Secret Price of History: Searching for the Treasure behind Alexander's Medallion by Gayle Ridinger and Paolo Pochettino has a complex plot that should grab any reader with an interest in history. It jumps back and forth between 19th century and 21st century adventures by following a medallion along with the people who possessed it and the people who searched for it during those two centuries. The story, in both centuries, is about the search for Alexander the Great's third treasure and the role the medallion plays in that search. It's also a detective story because the people searching for that treasure commit horrible crimes and need to be caught. These two mysteries are well written adventures that capture readers and keep them involved in the plot of a fairly long book.
Angie Cebrelli is a TV weather girl who spices up her spots by dressing as historical characters. When she decides to broadcast from a Civil War reenactment at Gettysburg, she chooses the outfit of her ancestor, an Italian immigrant who fought in that battle with the Garibaldi Guards, a group of soldiers with war experience from the Battle for the Roman Republic in Italy. She wears the red shirt that was the symbol for those soldiers, along with a medallion that has been in her family for generations. A bullet hits Angie's arm from someone using live ammunition. Fortunately, a Good Samaritan comes to her aid, but while the man is applying a tourniquet, another man tries to steal her medallion. Here's where Angie's portion of the story takes off as Angie begins her quest to learn why.
The Secret Price of History covers the 19th century Battle for the Roman Republic in great detail and touches on the American Civil War. (There is a wonderful description of the Battle of Gettysburg late in the book.) It also covers the ancient religion of Mithraism and touches on other philosophies such as Transcendentalism. Ridinger and Pochettino's research seems thorough. The Roman Republic (19th century) and the battle to secure it are subjects I have never studied, so that made the story even more interesting to me. I would recommend this novel to anyone who likes historical fiction.