Tag Archives: suspense

The Eye of God by James Rollins

In The Eye of God, James Rollins once again demonstrates his ability to combine history/archaeology with modern science.  In this case, he interwove Attila the Hun, Genghis Khan, and Thomas (Doubting Thomas) with dark energy, the multiverse theory, and the holographic universe hypothesis.

The last chapter only makes sense if you’ve read the rest of the book carefully.

The King’s Deception by Steve Berry

On the back cover of Steve Berry‘s latest Cotton Malone novel, The King’s Deception, is a blurb from Kirkus Reviews:  “A Dan Brown-ian secular conspiracy about the Virgin Queen driving nonstop international intrigue.”  Unless the point of the sentence was a play on the word Brownian as in Brownian motion, the reviewer seems to consider Dan Brown to be the leader in the genre, though, as from what I can find out, both Berry and Brown published their first novels in 2006..  Having read all of Berry’s (12) and Brown’s (6) novels, I can state unequivocally that Berry is better.  In fact, all of his novels have been well-written, interesting, and enjoyable.  Of Brown’s books, only two, Angels & Demons and The Da Vinci Code, can be favorably compared to any of Berry’s novels.

Until I read The King’s Deception, I was not familiar with the theory that Elizabeth I was a man.  I’m more inclined to believe Prince Tudor theory, which would make the the theory impossible unless Elizabeth died in childbirth in her early teens.

Inferno by Dan Brown

Though Inferno, Dan Brown‘s fourth Robert Langdon novel, is only a few pages longer than The Da Vinci Code and shorter than the other two (Angels & Demons 572 pages,  The Da Vinci Code 454 pages, The Lost Symbol 510 pages , Inferno 480 pages), I think it could have been much shorter.  Too much of the plot is based on misleading Langdon and the reader.

I have to repeat what I wrote after reading The Lost Symbol:  “I think Dan Brown‘s best novel is Angels & Demons followed by The Da Vinci Code. . . .”  I don’t remember enough about The Lost Symbol to rank it against Inferno.

In Inferno, Brown does include scientific as well as artistic information, though he didn’t include an author’s note about the research he did and what in the novel was true.  I guess he’s trying to compete with Steve Berry and James Rollins, though I don’t think he can.

Video: “Dan Brown Reveals the Secrets of ‘Inferno'”

Video:  “Dan Brown Reveals the Secrets of ‘Inferno’” from WSJDigitalNetwork

I picked up a copy of Dan Brown‘s Inferno at the library yesterday and started reading it last night.

I’m already disappointed because Langdon has apparently split up with the woman he was involved with in the last novel.  This character has real relationship problems.

Bloodline by James Rollins

In Bloodline (New York:  William Morrow-HarperCollins, 2012), James Rollins allows the members of Sigma Force to solve the mystery of the Guild, their nemesis in previous novels.  If it weren’t for a couple of hints in Bloodline, I’d think that it might be the last novel in the series.

I hope Rollins will use the new characters, Tucker and Kane, in future novels.

The Columbus Affair by Steve Berry

I’ve read all of Steve Berry‘s printed books (not the ebooks).  Until I started reading it, I had expected The Columbus Affair (New York:  Ballantine Books, 2012) to be the latest in the Cotton Malone series.  It’s not.

The concept and plot are interesting, but I didn’t care for the characters.  None of them is really very likeable or heroic.

The Devil Colony by James Rollins

In the past I’ve been impressed with the amount of research James Rollins had apparently done for his novels.  However, while reading The Devil Colony (New York:  William Morrow, 2011), I discovered that isn’t the case since he incorporated LDS (Mormon) beliefs and culture, which I know about, into the novel.  Rollins clearly didn’t do enough research in that area.

He didn’t even get the name of the church right.  The “Mormon Church” is actually The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, not the “Church of Latter-Day Saints” (58).

A major character, Hank Kanosh, is LDS and a professor at BYU.  If Hank really had been chewing on a cigar (24) and had engaged in an affair (27), he would have broken BYU’s Honor Code, which he would have agreed to observe by accepting an appointment to the faculty. The honor code specifically states

As a matter of personal commitment, students, faculty, and staff of Brigham Young University. . . are expected to demonstrate in daily living on and off campus those moral virtues encompassed in the gospel of Jesus Christ, and will:

  • . . . Live a chaste and virtuous life
  • . . . Abstain from alcoholic beverages, tobacco, tea, coffee, and substance abuse

Hank would also have been ineligible to go to any LDS temple, as he does at the end of the book (468-69).

In addition, no Latter-day Saints that I know “believe a more allegorical version of [any] part of [the Book of Mormon]” (199), though there are parables in sermons.  LDS scripture includes the Old Testament, the New Testament, the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price.  Latter-day Saints “believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly” and “the Book of Mormon to be the word of God” (“The Articles of Faith“).