Curse of the Coins by Dianne Ahern

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Book 3 of the series!

The 30 pieces of silver that Judas was paid for betraying Jesus were found in Israel. The Franciscan monks of Jerusalem sent the coins to the Vatican Museums for authentication and safekeeping – but then they disappeared! The Holy Father naturally must call upon his special agent, Sister Philomena, to find them. The search for the coins leads Sister Philomena, Riley, and Delaney on a harrowing ride through Rome with that crazy Sister Lisa Renee at the wheel. In the hunt for the coins, the reader gets to visit some of the great Basilicas of Rome and discover the many relics of the Passion of Jesus that are preserved in the basilicas.

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About the Book: 

Curse of the Coins is the third book in the series, although they need not be read sequentially. The adventure begins when Franciscan monks in Jerusalem find the 30 pieces of silver that Judas was paid for betraying Jesus. The coins are sent to the Vatican Museums for authentication and safekeeping, but are stolen by a mysterious thief. The thief leaves clues that lead Sister Philomena, Riley and Delaney on a treasure hunt to recover the coins.

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The clues lead the threesome to some of the great relics and basilicas in Italy. Among the stops are the Sistine Chapel, Basilica of Saint John Lateran, Basilica Santa Maria Maggiore, Church of Saint Peter in Chains, Scala Santa and Basilica Santa Croce in Gerusalemme. Not only is the reader given detailed descriptions of the locations, but also learns about their history and significance to the Catholic faith.
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The beautiful art, from illustrator William Shurtliff, transports the reader to Italy, and the text provides information about the customs and atmosphere in Italy. The glossary of Italian-to-English words and phrases encourages the child’s curiosity, while also teaching adults a thing or two.

Reviews: 

“In this third adventure, Riley and Delaney are on a treasure hunt around Rome searching for the coins that Judas received for betraying Jesus.  Someone has stolen the coins and has stashed them in various churches with mysterious notes!  I love how Aunt Philomena, secret agent to the Pope, allows Riley and Delaney to help her in the most fun ways.  Their antics had me laughing, holding my breath, and breathing sighs of relief, especially when they were being driven by Sister Lisa Renee!  I cannot wait to read the next book in this series.” – Sr. Paule Pierre Barbeau, OSB, Duluth, Minnesota

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About the Author: 

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Dianne Ahern grew up on a farm in Illinois, has traveled extensively for business and pleasure, and now resides in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology and Medical Technology from Marian College (University), and a Master’s degree in Healthcare Administration from Indiana University.  After rewarding careers in laboratory medicine, hospital administration, and healthcare consulting, Dianne found a new love: researching and writing about the events that shape our lives.

It was after her first Vatican visit in 1999, when Dianne looked into the eyes of Pope (Saint) John Paul II, held his hand, and kissed his ring, that she felt called to write books for Catholic children and their families.  Already a successful businesswoman, Dianne formed her own publishing company, Aunt Dee’s Attic, to support her new calling.

Beginning with the sacrament of baptism, Dianne outlined a series of books on the sacraments designed to prepare families for these most important events.  Her books’ formats merge storybook, reference book, and memory book elements into beautiful keepsake books. The sacrament books feature the imprimatur of the Catholic Church to assure families that the contents are true Church teachings.

In addition to her books on the sacraments, Dianne has developed a series of adventure/mystery books for young readers subtitled Adventures with Sister Philomena, Special Agent to the Pope.  The Adventure books place fictional characters in real settings to teach about the Church, saints, and holy places.  Her books have won accolades from retailers, readers, clergy, teachers, grandparents, and moms and dads.