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The Sion Revelation: The Truth About the Guardians of Christ's Sacred Bloodline Paperback – February 7, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The high tide of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code has lifted many boats, and one of them is the research of Picknett and Prince, self-styled writers on "the paranormal, the occult, and historical mysteries." Authors of The Templar Revelation, a book that helped inspire Brown's novel of hidden descendants of Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene, Picknett and Prince return to these enticing themes of secrets, treasures, heresy and backroom power brokering with a closer look at the Priory of Sion. In this book, they argue that the Priory is a hoax, but one that is carefully designed in the manner of misinformation leaked by intelligence agencies to achieve specific goals. Behind the hoax, they say, is a network of European esoteric societies driven by the principle of "synarchy" and influencing the coalescence of the European Union, perhaps at the expense of democracy. Like their many other books, this one is cluttered with historical minutiae and sources of varying credibility. Skeptics will shake their heads over this next conspiracy theory, but for Da Vinci Code fans hungry for additional digging behind the fiction, this will be a dense but satisfying read. (Feb. 7)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

The authors' previous book, The Templar Revelation (1998), a primary source for The Da Vinci Code, looked at the symbolism in Da Vinci's art as well as exploring the notion that a secret group, the Priory of Sion, was charged with guarding the secret of Jesus' bloodline. Since then, most researchers have debunked the Priory. Picknett and Prince now argue that the Priory is neither the centuries-old society Brown posited nor a complete hoax but a real group that wants to bring about a United States of Europe. To get to their explanation of that concept (a notion that will be of most interest to Europeans), readers must wade through lots of convoluted logic. So, why bother? Well, for the very asset the authors tout--their connection to The Da Vinci Code. Thanks to Brown's novel, there is great interest in the topics covered here, everything from bloodlines to Merovingian kings to Gnostic gospels. That's enough to spark interest in this wildly speculative book. When the authors write that a presumed assassination of Princess Diana is outside their scope, one can only sigh in relief. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 514 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone (February 7, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743263030
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743263030
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.5 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,067,600 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 45 people found the following review helpful By John D. Cofield TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 12, 2006
Format: Paperback
Here is yet another entry into the always fascinating but perplexing genre of "The Mystery of Rennes-le-Chateau and The Priory of Sion", which first leaped onto an unsuspecting world nearly twenty five years ago and has recently gained new life with Dan Brown's ubiquitous thriller "The Da Vinci Code."

The basic story, conveniently summarized by Picknett and Prince, concerns the activities of a poor parish priest in the 1890s who somehow got his hands on a great deal of money and came into contact with a large number of unusual people: royals, occultists, opera singers, and sundry other types. Tracing this priest's career led to the unveiling of a super secret society, the Priory of Sion, and its supposedly explosive secret: the survival of descendants of Jesus Christ and their claim to be the rightful rulers of France. (There's way more to the story than that, but that's the gist of it.)

Picknett and Prince try to sum up the evidence and tie up the loose ends, and they do a pretty good job of it, so far as is possible when dealing with a story that keeps on unfolding and always comes up with strange new twists. They debunk some of the more bizarre aspects, such as the Merovingian Dynasty's "right" to rule France and all of Europe, and prove(so far as anything in this story can be proven) that some of the chief protagonists, like Pierre Plantard, were habitual exagerrators if not downright liars.

However, the most interesting parts of this book deal with the odd coincidences and strange interconnections so many of the events and characters boast.
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64 of 78 people found the following review helpful By Bernardo Motta on January 30, 2006
Format: Paperback
Picknett and Prince are very well known to the trained Priory of Sion researcher. They are prominent members of the famous, and ludicrous, "Rennes generation". They are also known for their anti-scientific and singular approach to historical research. Their works are filled with numerous examples of source truncation and distortion of historical documents. Even if their books are always filled with footnotes, to disguise the lack of intellectuality and historical truth, the trained eye can see clearly the mark of pseudo-history in their books.

The "reviewer" Jeffrey J. Butz must be joking with the readers, by his comment... People are getting sick of the Priory of Sion intoxication. Plantard, dead since 2000, and his friend Chérisey (dead since 1985) must be laughing out loud with all this credulity. In a world that takes Dan Brown seriously, to the untrained eye, Picknett and Prince's footnotes may give the illusion of information. But only for a while... There is a great number of serious historical books on the Priory of Sion, most of all written in the French language. Serious people interested in the truth regarding the Priory of Sion hoax should be reading books by authors like Jacques Rivière, Jean-Jacques Bedu, Pierre Jarnac, Claire Corbu and Antoine Captier, Marie-France Etchegoin, Frédéric Lenoir, and many, many more. Most of these authors are writing about the subject matter since the 70's.

People that cannot read french can now easily grasp the truth regarding this popular hoax through the works of serious authors like italians Mario Arturo Iannaccone or Massimo Introvigne, or the british Bill Putnam and John Edwin Wood.
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22 of 27 people found the following review helpful By B Wilson on April 1, 2006
Format: Paperback
Kudos to the authors (and shame on those who are addicted to denial and zero-think debunking).

The type of intelligence operation documented in the book was common in the Cold War, and no one would blink an eye if they were told the KGB or CIA had initiated such an operation. Considering the intelligence and special operations backgrounds of some of the Priory characters, their use of such techniques is practically predictable. But it took Picknett and Prince to recognize the pattern.

There are still odd aspects to the interweaved threads of the Priory, the Rennes-le-Chateau mystery, and the Merovingian Legends (such as the book by Jules Vernes), and plenty to speculate about. But as far as what the Priory really is ... the book is well worth the read to answer that question. And yes, it is not a simple answer. But then, reality is often far more complex than we give it credit for.
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29 of 39 people found the following review helpful By P Smith on January 28, 2006
Format: Paperback
Basically what Picknett and Prince (believers in the Priory of Sion) have tried to do is to absorb all the damning negative evidence about Pierre Plantard and try to come up with all kinds of various excuses to try to make the subject matter sound serious. But their attempt contains significant omissions, sloppy treatment of the facts and hilarious unjustifiable assumptions that only specialists in the subject matter are able to spot - this is just another howler of a book from them. All interest in the Priory of Sion in France was terminated during the mid-1980s because by that time it was generally realised in that country that the whole thing was a Fake (and the books by Baigent, Lincoln and Leigh were never taken seriously in France either). The authors never bothered to contact authorities like Jean-Luc Chaumeil, who can easily prove by providing primary source evidence that the whole thing was a fake from beginning to end. You do not have to be a hyper-sceptic to know that this whole subject matter is fake but you need to be hyper-gullible to take the Priory of Sion seriously.
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