James Rollins: The Sixth Extinction (Review)

James Rollins

rollins

(James Czajkowski)
USA (1961 – )

aka James Clemens

James Rollins was born in Chicago, Illinois, is 1961. With his three brothers and three sisters, he was raised in the Midwest and rural Canada. He graduated with a doctorate in veterinary medicine from the University of Missouri and went on to establish his own veterinary practice in Sacramento, California. An amateur spelunker and a PADI-certified scuba enthusiast, he’ll often be found either underground or underwater.

Bio: Authors web site Bio

Buy from WH Smiths

 6th extinction

Book Description

A remote military research station in Utah sends out a frantic distress call, ending with a chilling final command: Kill us all! Personnel from the neighbouring base rush in to discover everyone already dead – and not just the scientists, but every living thing for 50 square miles has been annihilated. The land is entirely sterile – and the blight is spreading.

To halt the inevitable, Commander Gray Pierce and Sigma must unravel a threat that rises out of the distant past, to a time when Antarctica was green and all life on Earth balanced upon the blade of a knife. Following clues from an ancient map rescued from the lost Library of Alexandria, Sigma will discover the truth about an ancient continent, about a new form of death buried under miles of ice.

From millennia-old secrets out of the frozen past to mysteries buried deep in the darkest jungles of today, Sigma will face its greatest challenge to date: stopping the coming extinction of mankind. But is it already too late?

 

Review:

Reading a James Rollins is always a pleasure, he is an author who combines so many of my personal reading pleasures, there is the action of the story, the historic past of the back story, the familiar character of Sigma mixed with new faces, new bad guys(and girls) and a plot that is usually mind bogglingly twisty. Like all well told lies (according to the films/books) the best told lie or fiction, the one that people will really believe, is the one that contains as much truth as possible.

This is the true genius of James Rollins thrillers, the scope and depth of research is staggering, but then the author takes that, adds in his own knowledge and skills, and wraps it up in his… well,… convoluted mind is the only concept I can think to use and out comes a story, a story so crazy, so bizarre, yet so plausible that it scares the hell out of me reading it.

Each sigma tale shows how far mankind’s technological growth has outstripped its growth of morality, maybe, as part of the story shows we do need to reach for the immortality gene and live lives long enough to experience the folly of our mistakes and grab for profit over morality, to truly start to gain some wisdom and stop abusing the planet?

 

6th Extinction as with many Rollins tales leave me not wanting to talk too much about the plot, because to give anything away would be annoying as hell for me, so I won’t do it to another. I did however find that tied around all of the fantastic plot, and world ending disasters there was also a great deal of personal plot and growth for Sigma characters, the continual integration of the new with Jason, who continues to grow into a sigma star of the future, old favourites in Monk and of course Kowalski (also a surprise cameo of some really old characters). The most I will give you in overall plot summary is, it gets very Hot, it gets very cold, it’s got fantastic creatures that boggle the mind and kill with impunity and a plot that will chill the blood.

As ever with all of James Rollins books, for anyone who is an avid reader you will know that the characters are real, they are not some two dimensional construct on paper, you the reader bleed with them, hurt with them, cry with them. He has a truly amazing gift to suck the reader into the tale and the lives of those in the book. Also unlike many thrillers, anyone could die, and yet if the main characters survive it’s not because of some unbelievable herculean character it’s because of a skill built up over the story and previous books in the series, the group survive as a group because of shared skills and experience and teamwork. It all lends a layer of credibility and reality to the plot that is missing in so many other thrillers of this type.

 

I really do think that this is James Rollins most terrifyingly real, mind bending-ly plausible tale to date, I wonder what on earth could come next. I know I look forward to it immensely.

 

(Parm)

 

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Filed under James Rollins, Thrillers

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