Cotton Malone retired from the high-risk world of elite operatives for the U.S. Justice Department to lead the low-key life of a rare-book dealer. But his quiet existence is shattered when he receives an anonymous e-mail: “You have something I want. You’re the only person on earth who knows where to find it. If I don’t hear from you, you will be childless.” His horrified ex-wife confirms that their teenage son has been kidnapped. When Malone’s bookshop is burned to the ground, it becomes clear that those responsible will stop at nothing to get what they want– the lost Library of Alexandria. A cradle of ideas–historical, philosophical, literary, scientific, and religious–the Library of Alexandria was unparalleled in the world. But fifteen hundred years ago, it vanished into the mists of myth and legend. Now a cartel of wealthy international moguls is desperate to breach the library’s hallowed halls–and only Malone possesses the information they need to succeed. Pursued by a lethal mercenary, Malone crosses the globe in search of answers. His quest will lead him to England and Portugal, even to the highest levels of American government–and the shattering outcome will have worldwide repercussions.