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McCracken and the Lost Lady Paperback – April 22, 2017
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McCracken is an inventor and engineer, and does in fact resemble a Catholic Indiana Jones. He's a hero that won't easily be forgotten. With fast-paced adventure, heart-stopping excitement, and a bunch of lovable sidekicks to help him along the way, McCracken is a character that boys will look up to, admire, and actually be inspired by. (Teenage girls will doubtless develop a crush on him too, if they read these books!) This particular novel takes place in 1917, which is significant to both the story and its relationship with the 100th Anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima's Apparitions.
My only regret is that I didn't have these books a few years ago for my older sons. But I will definitely be buying the rest of the series for my boys still at home. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for every Catholic household!
A. They all show up in Mark Adderly's McCracken and the Lost Lady. McCracken, who has already had several daring adventures in previous novels, is now married with a small son -- and both his wife and toddler, along with a few other colorful characters, accompany him in this adventure across eastern Europe as they attempt to head off the Bolshevik revolution and rescue an ancient icon that many believe embodies the soul of Russia.
There is non-stop action in this story, which tumbles headlong across Italy, Austria, Germany, and Russia as McCracken and his companions, at the behest of the British government and the Roman pope, chase after Lenin as he travels to Russia to spark a revolution that Pope Benedict XV foresees will be "an era of oppression, mass murders, and godlessness unseen since the time of Sodom and Gomorrah." McCracken's aim is not so much to prevent a communist takeover of Russia as to locate and rescue a thousand-year-old icon called the Kazanskaya or Virgin of Kazan -- to save, as it were, the Christian soul of Russia.
There is definitely a "boys' own" flavor to this tale, which earns McCracken his reputation as a kind of Indiana Jones with family values, but adolescent boys are not the only ones who can enjoy this story. Anyone who enjoys a rip-roaring adventure should appreciate McCracken and the Lost Lady.
My one real quibble with this book was the quality of the type, which was either very low resolution or set to some shade of grey rather than true black, because the letters were somewhat pixelated. I hope that's a problem that can (and will) be fixed, because I'm probably not the only reader who will find it distracting.