"Innocent Blood" is the latest installment in the Order of the Sanguines series which centers on a secret religious order of vampire priests written by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell. (William Morrow Publisher, 437 pages)
Once again, the trio formed by the Knight of Christ (Fr. Rhun Korza), the Warrior of Man, (American soldier Jordan Stone) and the Woman of Learning (Professor Erin Granger) are out to prevent Armageddon as they seek out the First Angel.
Is Tommy Bolar, the young cancer victim who was mysteriously granted immortality in the debut novel, "Blood Gospel" the Angelic being they seek?
Their journey takes them to the land of Egypt where Scripture says Jesus spent his childhood hiding from Herod. Here they encounter the First Miracle of Jesus.
The story, which weaves elements of Gnosticism with the vampire legend, will disappoint anyone with any leaning towards orthodoxy. Who wants a flawed and fallible Christ?
Clearly the Jesus presented by Rollins and Cantrell is neither divine, nor perfectly human, as revealed in his careless killing with a sling shot a dove (the symbol of the Holy Spirit) as a young boy in Egypt.
Though he did not intend to kill the creature, but merely frighten it, these actions were neither godly nor truly human even if they brought about the First Miracle (the resurrection of the dove.)
Rest assured that this imaginative (though extremely heterodox) adventure continues in the next chapter as the trio confront the destroyer of worlds - Legion.