The Baltic Emerald
by Edmund Ward (1981)
- Saint Martin's Press: New York, NY, pp 281, ISBN:0 312 06626 0.
- Eyre Methuen: London. ISBN 041706800X, pbk. (1981)
- Methuen: London, pp 217. 18cm. ISBN 0413477800, pbk. (1982)
Jewel couriers are careful men and Joe Baer was the most careful of them all. The private rooms, the untouched drinks. But Joe was murdered just the same. Left to freeze in the desolation of a winter Swedish road, body full of alcohol, arms stabbed with needle-marks, fingertips raw and bleeding from a message he had scratched in razor edged snow crystals. A message for Morgan. Two hexagons. Emeralds. Joe's message handed Morgan the lever to a cornerstone which could topple men and nations, knowledge culled desperately from ancient parchment and a broken sword. But what Morgan did not understand was that Joe was only one more bloodstain in a trail that stretched across five centuries, and that he would have to run across continents to hold fortunes and keep his life. Trying to stop him were a group of fanatics who treated human life as a finger snap and an elite group of the world's security forces to whom Morgan was a pawn already dead. The Baltic Emerald is a polished and accurate thriller. Moving swiftly and surely through the quiet menace of international jewel-trading and its fringe areas of bought lives, it links the calculated destruction of today with the violence of a fifteenth-century empire long disintegrated. It is a scintillating and original story.