“36 Righteous Men: A Novel” by Stephen Pressfield— An Apocalyptic Thriller

Pressfield, Steven. “36 Righteous Men: A Novel”,  W.W. Norton, 2019.

An Apocalyptic Thriller

Amos Lassen

Steven Pressfield’s “36 Righteous Men” is an apocalyptic thriller in which New York homicide detectives pursue a serial killer. James Manning and Covina “Dewey” Duwai are called in to investigate a series of murders and as they investigate they are taken from headquarters of the Russian mafia in Brighton Beach to shops in Little Hong Kong. They do not have many leads on the killer. They apprehend a woman who is a disgraced but brilliant rabbinical scholar as she runs from one of the crime scenes and with this they realize the truth about the  the Jewish legend of the hidden Righteous Men and understand that the 36 men who protect the world from destruction is not legend and they are being murdered.

With the appearance of more and more bodies, the world becomes more and more chaotic. Manning and Dewey realize that they must must protect the last of the Righteous Men from a ruthless killer who is able to enchant the victims and command them against their will. This becomes a deadly game of cat and mouse during which the detectives find an arsenal of bullets and blades of little use against an enemy who knows their every move ahead of time.

They join with the rabbinical scholar and a renowned anthropologist to set off on a hazardly journey from New York to Gehenna in Israel to find and confront a murderer who won’t stop until he’s killed all 36.

History, mystery, and theology come together in this page turner that kept me reading all through the night. The future and the past come together in this futuristic noir thriller that delves into Jewish mysticism to search for the future of human survival. Steven Pressfield shares his brilliant imagination and creativity with us so much so that I am ready to read it again.

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