The Vessel tinaja: An Ancient City Mystery
by Randy Cribbs

"He was a good man, but I gave him evil in the vessel. Man must never drink from it again."

Mystery, intrigue, and a little sex thrown in—What more could you want? The Vessel is a wonderful story of a brilliant idea: What if Ponce de Leon was wrong and it wasn't a fountain after all, but a cup?

Set in modern-day St. Augustine, the story follows Robert Robson as he tries to unravel the mystery surrounding the death of a local archeologist. Drawn deeper and deeper into the intrigue while still refusing to believe the ancient Indian myth, Robson finds himself confronted with the corruptible evil of immortality until he finally has to make his own choice.

Cribbs has a remarkable talent in setting time and place that is evident throughout this work. He is as comfortable with Old St. Augustine as he is in the modern, giving a seamless account into a long-forgotten time. The plot is well-crafted and researched, and the suspense is delivered in measured doses and is just enough to keep the pages turning while providing insight into local legends and, of course, the cup itself.

Cribbs' language borders on perfect, never over-reaching, but subtle, comfortable, yet shifting to match the time of the setting with ease. The details of both the past and present come alive in the simplicity of the prose alone. This book is a great read for lovers of mysteries, the supernatural, and history.

Return to USR Home