Lincoln Child’s Deep Storm–Jeremy Logan 1

Overview: Dr. Peter Crane is used to high-stress jobs. After all, both the submarines in the Navy, as well as a few research groups aren’t exactly known for peace and relaxation, not even if you are an adrenaline junkie. His new assignment might just be more than he can handle. Peter has been called in to assist with the puzzle of the century. One a very special dig, members of the Deep Storm crew have fallen victim to a odd set of calamities. Unfortunately, there seems to be no common denominator. Can Peter find out what’s going on? Or, will he fall victim to outside forces?

Story Telling: I’m not really sure where to file this book. We have one part adventure, one part espionage, another part mystery, plus a bit of science-fiction to boot.

Dislikes: It’s mostly a matter of tastes. I don’t care much for aquatic our espionage novels.

Likes: Admiral Spartan was an impressive man. He seemed to want the best for the whole situation.

Favorite Character: It would be a toss up between Dr. Flyte and Admiral Spartan.

Favorite Quote: “So what? A black panther’s beautiful, too…right up to the minute it rips your guts out.”

Favorite Scene: It was the conversations between Dr. Flyte and Peter.

Conclusion: This was a decent book. I hope you enjoy it.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s Crimson Shore-Pendergast 15

Overview: It’s been four months since the events of “Blue Labyrinth.” Pendergast, is still recuperating, when he gets an intriguing offer. Percival Lake, a prominent sculptor, has had a horrible break-in at his lighthouse home. And what did the thieves abscond with? Oh, around $150,000 in wine. For an extremely rare bottle of wine, Pendergast is quite willing to turn his recuperating period into a working vacation.

Story Telling: We have another thriller novel courtesy of Mr. Preston and Mr. Child. Please be advised: while I strive to avoid spoilers in my reviews, be sure you’ve read this series through “The Book of the Dead.” Key plot points of that book will be discussed here.

Likes: Proctor is still doing what he can for Pendergast.

The area of Exmouth seemed like a pretty spot.

Believe it or not, I felt sorry for Chief Mourdock. It seemed like he was being set up to look foolish.

Dislikes: Now we’re going to hit spoiler-territory. For starters, while Pendergast has been known to use trickery, and other magician’s tricks, he has never–to my knowledge–outright lied to anyone, until now. He wasn’t up to his usual standards either.

Constance Green is a selfish little thing. Everything seemed to revolve around her feelings. Maybe she ought to remember what, exactly, happened to the last men who earned her ire.

Now this is really hard to say without spoiling the story. But, how did Diogenes come back? He fell, with help admittedly, into an active–I repeat A-C-T-I-V-E–volcano. Is he supposed to be god? If so, he falls far short of the mark.

Favorite Character: I’m going to go with Chief Mourdock. He was literally in over his head.

Favorite Quote: This actually fit’s the book. “You’ll have to excuse my associate,…. She has a rather mordant sense of humor.”

Favorite Scene: I loved the cooking lesson. It was the best part of the book.

Conclusion: All of the problems and quite a few incongruities in the story line, conspired to make this book one of the worse books in the Pendergast series. It left too many questions without answers for my tastes.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s Gideon’s Sword-Gideon Crew 1

Overview: Gideon Crew is a man having both the best and worst year of his life. The best part? He has finally brought down the man who framed Melvin Crew as a Russian spy. The worst part? He just found out that he has, maybe a year to live. There’s nothing like a job with a game of cat-and-mouse to take your mind off of your mortality, right? See, a Chinese scientist has smuggled something innovative into the United States. Gideon’s job is to find it. Let’s just hope the cat doesn’t catch the mouse.

Story Telling: This is more of an old-fashion adventure novel. Gideon seems to live in the Pendergast universe.

Likes: Eli Glinn is back. (Now you see why I say that Gideon is in Pendergast’s universe.) And EES is working the same as always.

Gideon seems to be able to sell anyone a bill of goods.

And Dajkovic was a honorable man.

Dislikes: Mindy was somebody that I could never really trust.

Nodding Crane didn’t honor his mother very well.

I’m not sure of what to make of the Falun Gong adherents. They seemed a bit off, claiming to be working for freedom, yet utilizing many hacker tricks.

Favorite Character: I’m going to go with Eli. Yes, you can trust Gideon to do the right thing in the long run. But, while Eli may not tell you everything, he will not lie to you.

Favorite Quote: Gideon has a good come-back here. “What’s wrong with patriotism–especially when it pays?”

Favorite Scene: Oh boy. Any time that Gideon was trying to get to see Mark Wu was funny.

Conclusion: Gideon was a fun guy to follow. I wonder what will happen to him next.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s Blue Labyrinth-Pendergast 14

Overview: Special Agent Pendergast is recovering from the events of “White Fire.” While waiting for their dinner, Constance and Pendergast hear a knock on the door. Surprise! It’s Alban. Just not in the sense that Pendergast ever expected. What purpose would Alban’s death serve? Where has he been for the past eighteen months? How did a piece of turquoise show up in Alban’s stomach? And how does the Pendergast Legacy tie in to all of this?

Story Telling: There was a smooth transition between Alban’s murder, and D’Agosta’s case. We also get to see what has happened to Margo since her run-in with Diogenes.

Likes: Mr. Preston and Mr. Child handled Pendergast’s slide toward debilitating madness well. We get to learn more of what Constance’s life with Dr. Enoch Leng was like. Alban’s life was something that will surprise most long-time readers of Pendergast.

Dislikes: John Barbeaux was a piece of work. Perhaps someone should have given him a dictionary with the words ‘revenge’ and ‘justice’ highlighted. And Slade had a problem with his ego as well.

Favorite Character: Now I can’t pick one of the usual characters. Or else you would see Pendergast here. But, I guess you can see that anyway. Alban Pendergast’s repentance and redemption gained him this position.

Favorite Quote: Tristram an explain why Alban reached the favorite character status. “Yes. He said that he was going to…right a wrong. Undo some terrible thing he himself had put into motion.”

Favorite Scene: The best part of this book was when Pendergast was coming alive again and said goodbye to Alban.

Conclusion: This is a pretty good addition to the Pendergast series. Now, it’s time to let Pendergast become his ghostly self again. He’s more intriguing that way.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s Thunderhead

Oh boy, oh boy! We get to see how Bill Smithback and Nora Kelly met and fell in love. How did that happen?

Nora is called out to her childhood home. Vandals and wild animals have been wrecking it. While there, she is attacked over a letter. The letter she finds on her way off of the lot. Reading the letter, she finds that her father wrote it, sixteen years ago during his search for Quivira, El Dorado, the city of gold of the Anasazi.

It doesn’t take long, a few weeks and losing her dog, for Nora to get an expedition to find Quivira, the only catch, she has to take the boss’s daughter and a reporter along.

Nora is a hard woman to like. Every time she shows up, it’s the same thing. Nor did I like Sloan Goddard. She was a strong anti-authoritarian. At times she did things that seemed designed to get under Nora’s skin.

The best parts of this book were Skip Kelly’s scenes, especially when he decides to adopt a neighbor’s dog for Nora. When Bill shows up looking for Nora, showing up in a limo, using a bullhorn, and hiding behind a copy of one of his books. Peter Holyard was cute, excited, and eager to aid in the greatest discovery in a long time. And Aragon’s attitude was one of the best of the whole crew.

The cook and Black were, I guess you’d call them, grey characters. They weren’t bad, but there weren’t enough scenes to give them much character. Not like Swire, the horse tender. There were a lot of unnecessary deaths in this book. If I could ask the authors one question of would be: why bother poisoning one guy when they are all going to poison themselves in the end anyway?

The book didn’t have the same majestic feeling that the Pendergast novels carried. It was a good for background, and the best part of the book was Mr. Kelly’s note to his children at the end.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s The Ice Limit

Meet Sam, a meteorite hunter who sold out his partner about three years prior to the story. He has just been offered the chance of a lifetime. The chance to find the world’s largest meteorite, the one his former partner/brother-in-law died to discover. A man named Palmer Loyd is funding the expedition, and has hired E.E.S., the same Eli Glinn in the ‘Dance of the Dead,’ to get it back to New York.

This book was a problem for me. If a water story has a good pace, I can handle it. And this book didn’t really stay in the water very long. The problems I had with it were simple. The Commandante, the main antagonist, was brutal and arrogant, a bad combination especially if you are like me and dislike unnecessary brutality. The second was Amira’s death, there was no cause for it, and it appeared like pain for pain’s sake. Finally it was Eli and the ending of the book. Eli showed great trust in his people except for the last few chapters. It was out of character for him. If it wasn’t for the Diogenes Trilogy, I wouldn’t have a clue as to what happened.

The story was a good one, but the flaws kept it from being great. Maybe if you read this one before the Diogenes’ Trilogy, you’ll like it better than I did.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s Riptide

Welcome to Ragged Island. Home to the largest pirate’s treasure trove in existence. It’s also home to the graves of the treasure hunters and pirates that have come seeking the booty. The latest owner is approached with an offer: a way to get the gold, and find out what happened to his brother. Dr. Malon Hatch thinks about it for just about twelve hours before he accepts the offer.

I found myself hating the engineer of this treasure pit. He had every right to hate the man who kidnapped him, but he took it out on humanity as a whole, culminating in the deaths of the innocent.

The story seems to be inspired by Oak Island. The authors seemed to be up-to-date on all of the discoveries about the place.

The best part of the book for me was when Isobel, the professor, and Hatch are trying to get one of Hatch’s childhood friends to go to the hospital. Pure genius.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s Mount Dragon

What would you do if you were offered a chance to cure humanity of the flu? That’s the question facing Dr. Guy Carson. On one hand, he sees a chance to save people from a serious problem, on the other hand, his former mentor is leading a crusade against the changing of the human genome. Carson agrees to work with curing the flu, unfortunately it appears to be more virulent, and fatal than the original source.

The book was a great story. It would have been closer to perfection if it wasn’t for Susana Cabeza de Vaca. This woman had a serious problem with her place in life. She wanted to like Guy so much that she had to find some ethnicity other than Anglo in his background.

The other problem cam in the form of Brent Scopes. He had a problem with anyone questioning his ideas.

My favorite part of the story was the company picnic. That and Mime’s dialogue.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s White Fire – Pendergast 13

Welcome to Roaring Fork a ski town, in Colorado, catering to the upper-end of the wealthy. Too bad that the major development company had to dig up the old cemetery, not that Corrie Swanson minds. Of course, she probably didn’t plan on getting arrested. Nobody expected to find an arsonist in town. Lucky for the town and Corrie, it’s Pendergast to the rescue.

This book made Pendergast seem more human to me. His relationship with Corrie seems even more paternal so much so, that when they seem to have a conflict of interest, he scolds her with the hope of encouraging her to think from multiple viewpoints.

Corrie, on the other hand, still seems to be hearing her mother’s recriminations made most of her victories bittersweet. Personally, I would’ve accepted the help Pendergast offered.

My favorite scene, if I must pick just one, was when Pendergast was trying to examine the last home that Arthur Conan Doyle wrote from. He tried to sweet-talk, and then blackmail an older woman who worked for the historical society. When he fails, he spends a few moments impressed with her fortitude. Then he trashes his blackmail material.

This book makes the whole Pendergast series even better. We got a glimpse past Pendergast’s mask, and a good story to boot. The ending of the story, the late Christmas scene, was a gem.

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child’s Two Graves – Pendergast 12 (Helen Trilogy 3)

Pendergast runs after those who’ve kidnapped his wife. Shortly afterwards, a killer starts stalking New York hotels. Unbeknownst to those investigating, the same organization is behind both the kidnapping and the murders.

This book was quite difficult to get through. There were too many storylines. One was Corrie trying to clear her father’s name. The other was Constance proving she wasn’t crazy. Both of these storylines could’ve been sent out much like ‘Extraction’ was. They were all tied up, so there were no loose ends at the end, it was just aggravating to want to know what’s going on with Pendergast’s story, and running into either Corrie’s or Constance’s story.

My favorite part of the book was when D’Agosta finally gets around to proposing to Hayward.

The ending was quite a close second. I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did.