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Maybe it was a case of mid-career boredom--or the obsessive loyalty to a twin brother--bur Father Jessup, a Jesuit scholar of ancient languages, found himself agreeing to deceive the hierarchy of his church in order to create an opportunity for his brother, James, to have access to the Shroud of Turin. The conflict revolves around a disparate group of scientists, the Roman Catholic Church, and a secret cult that deems itself the Guardians of the Second Coming of Jesus of Nazareth. The issue at stake appears to be the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin, but to Father Jessup's horror people are dying mysteriously because the real issue is something far darker than he could have imagined. The financial sponsor for the scientists is a powerful industrialist who understands all too well the high stakes that are at risk. To the dismay of her group she insists that her security chief, Rico Barbieri, be given a dominant role in the enterprise. But the dismay quickly evaporates when James's wife vanishes and Father Jessup finds himself in the greatest peril of his life. Richly intricate and literate, the conflict in "The Last Witness" is brought to life by the passion of the opposing forces of science and religion, and driven by the majestic themes of love, faith, and death. "This debut novel is an unnerving look at the future of today's technology." --Donna Eastman, "Editor Emeritus" "Compelling and topical storytelling by Joseph Barron. Science fiction of yesterday meet reality of tomorrow." --Lawrence W. Gold, M.D., Author of "Betrayal"