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Extended Audio Sample The Rosetta Key, by William Dietrich Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (974 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: William Dietrich Narrator: Jeff Woodma Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Ethan Gage Adventures Release Date:
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Surviving murderous thieves, a nerve-racking sea voyage, and the deadly sands of Egypt with Napoleon’s army, American adventurer Ethan Gage solved a five-thousand-year-old riddle with the help of a mysterious medallion. But the danger is only beginning…

Gage finds himself hurled into the Holy Land in dogged pursuit of an ancient Egyptian scroll imbued with magic, even as Bonaparte launches his 1799 invasion of Israel, which will climax at the epic siege of Acre. Pursuing Napoleon to France, where the general hopes ancient secrets will catapult him to power, the wily and inventive Gage faces old enemies with unlikely new friends, and must use wit, humor, derring-do, and an archaeological key to prevent dark powers from seizing control of the world.

Entertaining and vividly evocative, The Rosetta Key is William Dietrich at his fast-paced, cliff-hanger best. For lovers of stirring historical adventure laden with intriguing mystery and puzzles galore, The Rosetta Key is a terrific thrill ride not to be missed.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “An utterly captivating romp…Dietrich spins a merry magical mystery tour, winningly intricate…It’s the history that grabs you, rewritten as a pulse-pounding cliffhanger action flick…Mr. Spielberg! Mr. Lucas! It’s your move.”

    Seattle Times

  • “The prize-winning journalist/novelist, who lives in Anacortes, brings back the explorer hero from his popular adventure saga, Napoleon’s Pyramids, for a fast-paced sequel in which he continues his globe-trotting search for an Egyptian scroll reported to have magic properties.”

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer

  • The Rosetta Key is a fast-paced thriller that races between the Holy Land and the New World.”

    National Examiner

  • “Ethan Gage undergoes further life-threatening adventures in this rollicking sequel…Ever the incorrigible gambler and all-around scamp, Gage makes an irresistible anti-hero. The ending promises more volumes in what one hopes will be a long series.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Historical fiction meets thriller here, with plenty to interest fans of both genres. The action is nearly nonstop, the humor is plentiful, and the intrigue is more than enough to keep the pages turning.”

    School Library Journal

  • “A full-bore thriller and who better than Dietrich for an all-out romp with seductive characters, alluring plot, and dynamic historical elements? In this installment in the popular Ethan Gage series, the search is on for the Book of Thoth, an ancient, possibly magical Egyptian scroll.”


  • “Exciting and well-written…Dietrich’s latest tale is ripe with rich detail of the Holy Land of the period and its disparate peoples. Fascinating historical and fictional characters and good dialog add to the mix. Offering high adventure and good history, it’s also great fun.”

    Library Journal

  • “An electrifying combination of battles, exotic landscapes, and colorful characters who really lived.”

    International Thriller Writers Blog

  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Laura | 2/15/2014

    " The Rosetta Key has the flavor of an Indiana Jones type movie. I didn't read book one of the series and perhaps I would have appreciated book 2 better had I read that first. Regardless, it was a good book but not a great book. Ethan Gage is the main character. He calls himself a savant. He is an adventurer in the late 1700s. He finds himself in Egypt and Israel in search of the book of Thoth as well as his lost love (from the previous book) Astiza. Although the book was an okay read, I probably needed to see it as a movie to appreciate the action. Gage finds himself in situations that you think that no one could possibly survive and yet he does. Time and time again be prepared for death threats by unusual means. I've always wondered why the bad guy doesn't just kill their nemesis instead of having him slowly die by bizarre methods from which he manages to get away anyway. In the beginning of the book he is already in front of a firing squad and we read the words being said, "Ready, Aim, FIre". I think that is my only frustration with an otherwise action packed novel. i particularly enjoyed the side characters more than the main character. Many of them were former enemies that became friends. Mohammed and Ned were interesting people. I also enjoyed Jericho and his sister, Miriam. I would loved to have read more about them in the novel. One thing that I do appreciate about this book is the way the author infused real historical events within the novel. It is a good read when I find myself wanting to learn more about the history of what I've read. Thank goodness I live with a "historian" of sorts who gave me great background knowledge of Napoleon as well as what was going on in the Americas at that time. I particularly enjoyed reading the Afterword in which the author stated which facts were historical and which were just made up for novel purposes. Did you know that Notre Dame Cathedral was located on a site of a Roman temple to Isis? I didn't. I applaud the fact that William Deitrich did his research before writing this historical fiction adventure. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Richard | 2/10/2014

    " Great book with lots of fun Indiana Jones kinds of adventures. I liked the setting of 1799 as well. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Elizabeth | 1/30/2014

    " A surprisingly enthralling read. I picked it off the shelf because I was intrigued by the first sentence and ended up flying through it in two days! There is a sort of humor in the writing which I really enjoyed. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Colt6464 | 1/27/2014

    " Nothing special, but enjoyable, with some loose history references "

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About the Author
Author William Dietrich

William Dietrich is a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist, historian, and naturalist, as well as the author of numerous novels, including the Ethan Gage adventures, which have been translated into more than thirty languages. He is a winner of the PNBA Award for nonfiction and lives in Washington State.