Nicholas Flamel (a real person) and his lovely wife, Perinelle [sp?] have used the magical book, the Codex of Abraham the Mage, to live -- comfortably middle-aged -- for the past 600+ years. Another historical figure, John Dee, has also managed immortality, but he has been chasing the Flamels across the centuries in pursuit of the Codex. Dee seems to have finally cornered them in their antique bookshop in present-day San Francisco. Also working at the bookshop is young Josh Newman, whose twin sister Sophie is working across the street at a coffee shop. During the attack by Dee, Perinelle is taken, but Josh tears the last few pages of the Codex from Dee's grasp, which means that Dee lacks critical information to complete his nefarious, earth-destroying plan. Nicholas realizes that Josh and Sophie may be the answer to one of the predictions in the Codex, and he takes them on a journey to find the magical entities who can awaken their magical powers and help him to defeat Dee and his evil masters, the Dark Elders.
It is, naturally, book one of a series, so there's a certain amount of exposition. However, the young heros Josh and Sophie are pleasingly realized, and it's easy to root for them. Towards the end of the novel, it seemed like one character might be headed to the dark side, and I admit to a certain amount of reader tension. There's plenty of action (I believe it's been optioned for movieland), so those fantasy readers one is always trying to keep ahead of should enjoy it.
(I wanted to link to the author's webpage (http://www.dillonscott.com/) but it doesn't appear to be cooperating this evening.)
Unfortunately, narrator O'Hare really dampens down the excitement here. He reads in a rapid monotone that makes it difficult to feel much terror and excitement at the several action set pieces. He's got to produce a fair number of accents and characters (both human and other) and he doesn't appear to be working very hard at any of them. You kind of get the feeling he's not breaking a sweat. The rapidity with which he reads occasionally causes him to swallow syllables -- there was more than one occasion when "flamel" got half-swallowed. (Say it out loud: Nicholas Flamel. Not the easiest thing to say.)
I was disappointed. Lovers of audiobooks who are in need of a good listen: Find The Witch's Boy.