Title: X Marks the Spot
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Author: M.J. O’Shea
Jack Hunter is always on a quest for lost art, ancient manuscripts, and anything else that’ll romance the millions of viewers who watch his show each week. He hasn’t always hit pay dirt in his searches though, and a string of empty global treasure hunts has left his show on the brink of cancellation. Jack needs a white whale, a holy grail, nothing less than a miracle to revive his career.
Aloysius “Alo” Green likes his ivory towers. He’s content to study from the comfort of a university library and publish papers nobody other than academics will ever read. But coded letters pointing to hidden Nazi treasure fall into his hands, and while colleagues warn him to keep them to himself, Alo can’t stop obsessing. He makes a huge mistake and publishes a paper on his find, ignoring the danger doing so will bring.
Jack is sure he’s struck gold when his assistant brings Alo’s paper to him. Alo wants nothing to do with Jack or his televised treasure hunt. But after Alo is threatened, it appears Jack is his best bet to silence those who seek to use him to find the vast wealth first.
By trusting Jack, Alo might’ve saved himself… or made his worst decision yet.
X Marks the Spot is a contemporary novel with a bit of mystery as well as a bit of comedy. The story has at its center a hero who is your typical reality star, and a college student who wishes to never leave campus.
Jack is an “archeologist” searching for lost treasure as millions of people watch from their living rooms. Only, as the years have passed Jack’s luck has turned and more and more he has come up empty handed. Alo, our other hero, is a young college student who would rather do nothing but study, but instead finds himself thrown into a family mystery that makes him the center of attention. It is this mystery that brings the two men together.
During World War II Alo’s great grandfather worked for the Germans inorder to keep from being sent to the camps. Along the way he is able to stash a vast treasure, with hopes of returning for some day. Only someday never comes and Alo’s great grandfather becomes a family mystery.
In the beginning Jack was not a favorite character as it is quite clear he was only interested in getting everything he could from Alo inorder to keep from being canceled. The chemistry between the two men is strong from the beginning however, and even though they do not get together right away, the connection is strong enough that Alo lets himself be drawn into Jack’s quest. I liked watching Alo come out of his shell and loved the way Jack encourages him along the way. Of course, not everything they do is legal and there were moments during some of their ‘cappers’ when I could not help but laugh.
Of course with a treasure as large as the one Jack and Alo are looking for, you know that there is someone out there who will do anything to keep them from finding it. There are a couple of twists, and one “I did not see that coming” moment, all of which will hold the readers interest. I love the way the author wraps this story up and would love to see more of Alo and Jack in the future.
X Marks the Spot is a fun read and will surely bring the author many new fans.
Reviewed by: Lydia