Reviews of "The Eight"

“Even readers with no interest in chess will be swept up into this astonishing fantasy-adventure… Neville has great fun rewriting history and making it all ring true. With two believable heroines, nonstop suspense, espionage, murder, and a puzzle that seems the key to the whole Western mystical tradition, this spellbinder soars above the level of first-rate escapist entertainment. Daring, original and moving… destined to become a cult classic.”

Publishers Weekly


“A feminist answer to Raiders of the Lost Ark.”

The Washington Post


“The female counterpart to Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose… Impossible to put down.”

Boston Herald * cannot find article yet


“With alchemical skill, Neville blends modern romance, historical fiction, and medieval mystery . . . and comes up with gold.”

People Magazine


A fascinating piece of entertainment that manages to be both vibrant and cerebral . . . Few will find it resistible.”

Los Angeles Times


“A big, rich, two-tiered confection of a novel…a rousing, amusing game.”

San Francisco Chronicle 


“Fascinating… Mind-boggling.”



“Intriguing, fast-moving… Crammed with skullduggery and a chess-based plot that hops between the eighteenth and [twentieth] centuries.”

Seattle Post-Intelligencer


 “A gutsy, multi-genre leap through history, full of puzzles and mysteries…The Eight‘s plotting and execution are masterfully handled.”

The Detroit News


“Neville’s classy thriller is multilayered in time… A big, juicy quest novel with something for everyone: computer lore, chess, the occult, ancient curses.”

New Woman


“Extraordinarily absorbing… a gripping adventure tale of greed and lust for power.”

Rocky Mountain News 


“Dazzling… A perfectly crafted story that has everything: an intricate and exciting Rubik’s Cube plot; tales within tales; historical characters from Napoleon and Talleyrand to Catherine of Russia; action that moves from France during the revolution to a Casbah in modern Algeria; elements from music, mathematics, physics, and alchemy; and ancient warnings from gods and legends.” 

St. Paul Pioneer Press & Dispatch


“The taut, suspenseful narrative is interwoven with a seemingly infinite number of mathematical puzzles, crosswords, and cryptograms… History, mystery, and adventure galore.”



“Top-notch escapist fare… [An] adventure-romp through history with two intrepid heroines.”

The Orlando Sentinel 


“A real page turner… any aficionado of chess, mathematics, music, history, adventure, mystery, intrigue and yes, even romance, will adore this book.”

Inside Books


“Just the right dose of esotericism, secret history, and mystery, long before those ingredients had been mixed into other remarkable cocktails.”

—Javier Sierra, Bestselling Author


“Ground-breaking, mind-bending fiction. One of the most memorable books ever written.”

—Tess Gerritsen, Internationally Bestselling Author


The Eight is unforgettable. The pages tatter, the type fades, I loan the book – it doesn’t return, stolen by yet another besotted reader. So I buy another copy. Beautifully crafted, poetically written, excitingly original, this great novel has earned a place in the hearts of hundreds of thousands of happy readers, and I am proud to count myself one.”

—Gayle Lynds, NY Times Bestselling Author 


“…the ultimate in escape fiction.”

—Clifton Fadiman, Author & TV/Radio Personality


“This is a quest with something for everyone: ancient curses from the Fertile Crescent; Russian chess masters; sexy, savvy American computer whizzes; Napoleon and Robespierre; brave nuns; valiant Jewish diamond merchants; magic numbers; secret hiding places; the music of the spheres. In other words, Katherine Neville’s big adventure novel is great fun!”

—Susan Isaacs, Author


The Eight is one of my all time favorite books. Some people say the action in this book reminds them of The Da Vinci Code except that The Eight was published long before Dan Brown’s thriller. Back in 1988 a customer came into Book Passage and told me about The Eight. He said it was the most exciting book he’d read in years. I took The Eight home that night and became an avid Katherine Neville fan. We still put the The Eight into the hands of our customers and like them, I’m eagerly awaiting the day The Fire arrives in the store.”

—Elaine Petrocelli, Book Passage Bookstore


The Eight by Katherine Neville is a marvelous adventure with a terrific female protagonist, full of historical lore, chess trivia and a stunning plot that never stops moving. I’ll never forget the satisfying ‘clicks’ as all the puzzle pieces lock into place. That that’s a fact.”

—Mary Alice Gorman, Mystery Lovers Bookshop