Skip to main content

The Absolution


The Absolution

As sunrise gleams over a beach in Venice, Italy, the beams of morning light illuminate a startling discovery: the body of a man with his throat slit and tongue cut out. The ironic thing is not that the police made this discovery on Venice's most popular beach, but that the way the body was mutilated speaks to who may have been responsible for the murder and why it happened.

The final installment in Jonathan Holt’s Carnivia Trilogy, THE ABSOLUTION, delves into Venice's past and takes a giant step forward by also focusing on modern technology that is paving the way for the future. The series has been multi-layered throughout as we see the above-ground reality of Venice as a city teeming with secrets and attempting to hide from a past history that keeps rearing its ugly head. Beneath this is the virtual version of the same city that can be explored through The unique thing that Holt is able to do is create a new fictional reality that blends both the actual and the virtual Venice and end up with something that is a hybrid of both.

"The unique thing that Holt is able to do is create a new fictional reality that blends both the actual and the virtual Venice and end up with something that is a hybrid of both."

The brutal murder that took place becomes the responsibility of Carabinieri Detective Kat Tapo. She is a female operating in a system that is overwhelmingly male and facing pressure from both within her own justice system and outside in the often dangerous underground society that exists within the heart of Venice.

Kat immediately suspects that something is amiss when the mutilated body on Lido beach was found wearing a mysterious mask. She recognizes that the murder did not take place on the beach and that the body had been moved. Further digging points to a strange ritual and signs of Masonic involvement. Why would an ancient group like Italy's Freemasons be involved in such a public killing? This ends up being the first murder investigation that Kat is running, and it is no coincidence that the powers that be may be setting her up to fail.

Meanwhile, and its founder, the brilliant and reclusive Daniele Barbo, are facing their own issues. Daniele has been trying to exit his anonymous site quietly, but a threat by outside hackers in what may be a takeover attempt is making this quite difficult.  When a virus is discovered contaminating the site, Daniele faces a challenge in removing it before it unleashes a wave of destruction throughout the country.

Both Kat and Daniele's individual struggles may lay on the same pathway. When an American intelligence analyst named Holly Boland begins tracing a conspiracy dating back to a shocking Cold War cover-up, it becomes evident that all paths lead to an explosive conclusion where all of these storylines converge --- and the fallout could bring down this great Italian city.

Jonathan Holt pulls out all the stops and brings this unique thriller trilogy to a stunning conclusion.

Reviewed by Ray Palen on December 11, 2015

The Absolution
by Jonathan Holt

  • Publication Date: December 6, 2016
  • Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller
  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
  • ISBN-10: 0062267086
  • ISBN-13: 9780062267085