Category Archives: James Rollins

James Rollins : Demon Crown (Review)

Image result for james rollins demon

Author Web site

James Rollins is a #1 New York Times bestselling author of international thrillers, translated into more than forty languages. His Sigma series has been lauded as one of the “top crowd pleasers” (New York Times) and one of the “hottest summer reads” (People Magazine). In each novel, acclaimed for its originality, Rollins unveils unseen worlds, scientific breakthroughs, and historical secrets–and he does it all at breakneck speed and with stunning insight.

As a boy immersed in the scientific adventures of Doc Savage, the wonders of Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, and pulps such as The Shadow, The Spider, and The Avenger, James Rollins decided he wanted to be a writer. He honed his storytelling skills early, spinning elaborate tales that were often at the heart of pranks played on his brothers and sisters.

Before he would set heroes and villains on harrowing adventures, Rollins embarked on a career in veterinary medicine, graduating from the University of Missouri and establishing a successful veterinary practice. He continues to volunteer his time and veterinary skills in support of the local SPCA. His hands-on knowledge of medicine and science helps shape the research and scientific speculation that set James Rollins books apart.

 

The Demon Crown (2017)
(Book 13 in the Sigma Force series)

book cover of The Demon Crown

THE DEMON CROWN

Off the coast of Brazil, a team of scientists discovers a horror like no other, an island where all life has been eradicated, consumed and possessed by a species beyond imagination. Before they can report their discovery, a mysterious agency attacks the group, killing them all, save one, an entomologist, an expert on venomous creatures, Professor Ken Matsui from Cornell University.

Strangest of all, this inexplicable threat traces back to a terrifying secret buried a century ago beneath the National Mall: a cache of bones preserved in amber. The artifact was hidden away by a cabal of scientists – led by Alexander Graham Bell – to protect humankind. But they dared not destroy it, for the object also holds an astonishing promise for the future: the very secret of life after death.

Yet, nothing stays buried forever. An ancient horror – dormant in the marrow of those preserved bones – is free once more, nursed and developed into a weapon of incalculable strength and malignancy, ready to wreak havoc on an unsuspecting world.

To stop its spread, Commander Grayson Pierce of Sigma Force must survive a direct attack on the island of Maui. To be there first has always been the core mission of Sigma Force, a covert team forged to be America’s front line against emerging threats. But this time, even Sigma may not be able to decipher this deadly mystery, one that traces back to the founding of the Smithsonian Institution.

With each new discovery, the menace they hunt is changing, growing, spreading – adapting and surviving every attempt to stop it from reconquering a world it once ruled. And each transformation makes it stronger . . . and smarter.

Running out of time and options, Commander Grayson Pierce will be forced to make an impossible choice. To eradicate this extinction-level threat and expose those involved, he will have to join forces with Sigma’s greatest enemy–the newly resurrected Guild – even it if means sacrificing one of his own.

Review

Thirteen books into the Sigma series and as a reader i always worry how a writer will keep a series fresh, new and exciting and with this type of book where cutting edge is key can they keep it in the realm of believable.

James Rollins always amazes me with his ability to write a tight, interesting, action packed story, but most of all his ability to keep coming up with world ending scenarios that are totally realistic. Each and everyone a trial for the Sigma team, to both solve the world ending conundrum and also survive those who are trying to cause the apocalypse.

With a Rollins book its not just the roller coaster ride of the thriller that wins me over, its the absolute attention to detail, the huge depth of subject research, both biological and historical, but also arms and armour. These are not cheaply thrown together beach pulp fiction titles, these are the cream of the Action Adventure, thriller world, and year after year book after book he manages to knock it out of the park.

Demon Crown is quite possibly one of the best to come out of the Sigma Force stable. Infusing history across multiple time periods for both the cataclysmic event, but also the conspiracy that surrounds the Guild, the latest potential technology for DARPA and similar agencies, a new and ancient, deadly, potentially global event, so simple and yet so complex in its devising that it kept me guessing all the way through the book, set in locations so well described you want to pack your bags and visit. As always the whole thing pulled together by characters who while on the heroic side, they also live  , breathe and bleed on every page, making the whole book believable.

A full five stars again for this splendid book, just what i hoped for and always more than i expected.

(Parm)

 

Series
Sigma Force
1. Sandstorm (2004)
2. Map of Bones (2005)
3. Black Order (2006)
4. The Judas Strain (2007)
5. The Last Oracle (2008)
6. The Doomsday Key (2009)
6.5. The Skeleton Key (2011)
7. The Devil Colony (2011)
7.5. Tracker (2012)
8. Bloodline (2012)
9. The Eye of God (2013)
10. The Sixth Extinction (2014)
10.5. The Midnight Watch (2015)
11. The Bone Labyrinth (2015)
12. The Seventh Plague (2016)
13. The Demon Crown (2017)
The Doomsday Key / The Last Oracle (omnibus) (2013)
Sigma Force Novels 1 (omnibus) (2014)
Crash and Burn (2016)
Ghost Ship (2017)
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Jake Ransom
1. Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow (2009)
2. Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx (2010)
Jake Ransom Complete Collection (omnibus) (2014)
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Order of the Sanguines (with Rebecca Cantrell)
0.5. City of Screams (2012)
1. The Blood Gospel (2013)
1.5. Blood Brothers (2013)
2. Innocent Blood (2013)
3. Blood Infernal (2014)
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Tucker Wayne (with Grant Blackwood)
1. The Kill Switch (2014)
2. War Hawk (2015)
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Novels
Subterranean (1999)
Excavation (2000)
Deep Fathom (2001)
Amazonia (2002)
Ice Hunt (2003)
Altar of Eden (2009)
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Novellas
The Devil’s Bones (2014) (with Steve Berry)
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Series contributed to
Indiana Jones (Films)
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull(2008)
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Filed under Action/ Adventure Thrillers, James Rollins, Thrillers

James Rollins: The Seventh Plague (Review)

James Rollins's picture

James 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.

The Seventh Plague: A Sigma Force Novel (Sigma Force Novels)

Buy UK

Buy USA

Two years after vanishing into the Sudanese desert, the leader of a British archeological expedition, Professor Harold McCabe, comes stumbling out of the sands, frantic and delirious, but he dies before he can tell his story. The mystery deepens when an autopsy uncovers a bizarre corruption: someone had begun to mummify the professor s body while he was still alive.

His strange remains are returned to London for further study, when alarming news arrives from Egypt. The medical team who had performed the man s autopsy has fallen ill with an unknown disease, one that is quickly spreading throughout Cairo. Fearing the worst, a colleague of the professor reaches out to a longtime friend: Painter Crowe, the director of Sigma Force. The call is urgent, for Professor McCabe had vanished into the desert while searching for proof of the ten plagues of Moses. As the pandemic grows, a disturbing question arises.

Are those plagues starting again?

Before Director Crowe can investigate, a mysterious group of assassins leaves behind a fiery wake of destruction and death, erasing all evidence. With the professor s body incinerated, his home firebombed, Sigma Force must turn to the archaeologist s only daughter, Jane McCabe, for help. While sifting through what s left of her father s work, she discovers a puzzling connection tying the current threat to a shocking historical mystery, one involving the travels of Mark Twain, the genius of Nikola Tesla, and the adventures of famous explorer Henry Morgan Stanley.

To unravel a secret going back millennia, Director Crowe and Commander Grayson Pierce will be thrust to opposite sides of the globe. One will search for the truth, traveling from the plague-ridden streets of Cairo to a vast ancient tomb buried under the burning sands of the Sudan; the other will struggle to stop a mad genius locked within a remote Arctic engineering complex, risking the lives of all those he holds dear.

As the global crisis grows ever larger, Sigma Force will confront a threat born of the ancient past and made real by the latest science a danger that will unleash a cascading series of plagues, culminating in a scourge that could kill all of the world s children . . . decimating humankind forever.

Review

I always think any thriller writer stepping into the biblical sphere is taking a big risk, not just because of those who follow religion and that they might jump all over the book, but just the whole sphere of what is actually plausible.

Fortunately Rollins is one of the few writers that can pull it off, and not “just”… he pulls it off with style. The scope of most Rollins novels is broad, but one that includes: Stanley, Livingstone, Tesla and the biblical plagues of Egypt, well you know the story is going to be something special, the fact that he can make you believe the entire plot, and that he may have found the reason behind those plagues… well, its a testament to his writing style, skill and imagination (and no little research).

You can tell that the research that’s gone into this book is exhaustive, Rollins has got to know his characters, Sigma he has a deep knowledge of, but adding in Tesla, Livingston and Stanley, which he has done effortlessly, and this only comes from making them real, and knowing them (research, research research), the same with the plagues and the location. The depth and breadth of his work is what draws me to his novels, he never dials it in. His books are the benchmark of action thrillers.

Highly recommended

(Parm)

Series
Sigma Force
1. Sandstorm (2004)
2. Map of Bones (2005)
3. Black Order (2006)
4. The Judas Strain (2007)
5. The Last Oracle (2008)
6. The Doomsday Key (2009)
6.5. The Skeleton Key (2011)
7. The Devil Colony (2011)
7.5. Tracker (2012)
8. Bloodline (2012)
9. The Eye of God (2013)
10. The Sixth Extinction (2014)
10.5. The Midnight Watch (2015)
11. The Bone Labyrinth (2015)
12. The Seventh Plague (2016)
The Doomsday Key / The Last Oracle (omnibus) (2013)
Sigma Force Novels 1 (omnibus) (2014)
Crash and Burn (2016)




Jake Ransom
1. Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow (2009)
2. Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx (2010)
Jake Ransom Complete Collection (omnibus) (2014)
Order of the Sanguines (with Rebecca Cantrell)
0.5. City of Screams (2012)
1. The Blood Gospel (2013)
1.5. Blood Brothers (2013)
2. Innocent Blood (2013)
3. Blood Infernal (2015)

Tucker Wayne (with Grant Blackwood)
1. The Kill Switch (2014)
2. War Hawk (2016)
Novels
Subterranean (1999)
Excavation (2000)
Deep Fathom (2001)
Amazonia (2002)
Ice Hunt (2003)
Altar of Eden (2009)

Novellas
The Devil’s Bones (2014) (with Steve Berry)
Series contributed to
Indiana Jones (Films)
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull(2008)

 

 

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James Rollins and Grant Blackwood : War Hawk (review)

James 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.

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Former Army Ranger Tucker Wayne and his war dog Kane are thrust into a global conspiracy that threatens to shake the foundations of American democracy in this second exciting Sigma Force spinoff adventure from New York Times bestselling authors James Rollins and Grant Blackwood.Tucker Wayne s past and his present collide when a former army colleague comes to him for help. She s on the run from brutal assassins hunting her and her son. To keep them safe, Tucker must discover who killed a brilliant young idealist a crime that leads back to the most powerful figures in the U.S. government.From the haunted ruins of a plantation in the deep South to the beachheads of a savage civil war in Trinidad, Tucker and Kane must discover the truth behind a mystery that leads back to World War II, to a true event that is even now changing the world . . . and will redefine what it means to be human.With no one to trust, they will be forced to break the law, expose national secrets, and risk everything to stop a madman determined to control the future of modern warfare for his own diabolical ends. But can Tucker and Kane withstand a force so indomitable that it threatens our very future?”

Review

James Rollins is one of my go to reads when i need a break from Historical Fiction, something that is certain to provide a fast paced action filled read, i cant think of a time he has ever let me down…. Tucker Wayne is no exception to that rule, where it is different is in style, because one of the main characters is a dog. When i first heard this i was dubious, but Rollins has such an innate knowledge of animals that it even caries over to how they potentially think. producing a high level, intelligent persona for the dog, one which is highly believable and readable.

The story its self is another success, i powered through the whole of this book in a day, with his usual page turning style reproduced in conjunction with Grant Blackwood and delivering what all fans have come to love and expect. Im not shocked at this continuity of style and quality having really enjoyed the series Rollins produced with Rebecca Cantrell (a truly wonderful series).

The book description above gives a great background for the plot, the cyber war, terror and power hungry conglomerate combination is powerful and works so well in this modern day world of greed and distrust of the ruling elite. The name of the main protagonist while a little jarring for UK audience should be no hindrance, Clive Cussler after all has made a career from Dirk Pitt.

So for thriller fans, or those looking for something fun to break from the norm, this is well worth a read.

(Parm)

Series

 

Sigma Force
1. Sandstorm (2004)
2. Map of Bones (2005)
3. Black Order (2006)
4. The Judas Strain (2007)
5. The Last Oracle (2008)
6. The Doomsday Key (2009)
6.5. The Skeleton Key (2011)
7. The Devil Colony (2011)
7.5. Tracker (2012)
8. Bloodline (2012)
9. The Eye of God (2013)
10. The Sixth Extinction (2014)
10.5. The Midnight Watch (2015)
11. The Bone Labyrinth (2015)
The Doomsday Key / The Last Oracle (omnibus) (2013)
Sigma Force Novels 1 (omnibus) (2014)
The Seventh Plague (2016)



 

Jake Ransom
1. Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow (2009)
2. Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx (2010)
Jake Ransom Complete Collection (omnibus) (2014)

 

Order of the Sanguines (with Rebecca Cantrell)
0.5. City of Screams (2012)
1. The Blood Gospel (2013)
1.5. Blood Brothers (2013)
2. Innocent Blood (2013)
3. Blood Infernal (2015)

 

Tucker Wayne (with Grant Blackwood)
1. The Kill Switch (2014)
2. War Hawk (2016)
Novels
Subterranean (1999)
Excavation (2000)
Deep Fathom (2001)
Amazonia (2002)
Ice Hunt (2003)
Altar of Eden (2009)

Novellas
The Devil’s Bones (2014) (with Steve Berry)
Series contributed to
Indiana Jones (Films)
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull(2008)

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Filed under James Rollins, Thrillers, Uncategorized

James Rollins / Rebecca Cantrell Blood Infernal (Review)

The Author’s

James Rollins

rollins

JAMES ROLLINS is the New York Times bestselling author of international thrillers, translated into more than forty languages.  His Sigma series has been lauded as one of the “top crowd pleasers” (New York Times) and one of the “hottest summer reads” (People Magazine). In each novel, acclaimed for its originality, Rollins unveils unseen worlds, scientific breakthroughs, and historical secrets–and he does it all at breakneck speed and with stunning insight. James Rollins decided to become a writer as a boy immersed in the scientific adventures of Doc Savage, the wonders of Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, and pulps such as The Shadow, The Spider, and The Avenger. He honed his storytelling skills early, spinning elaborate tales that were often at the heart of pranks played on his brothers and sisters.

Although his talent emerged and grew, writing was not James’ original profession. Before he would set heroes and villains on harrowing adventures, he embarked on a career in veterinary medicine, graduating from the University of Missouri and establishing a successful veterinary. This hands-on knowledge of medicine and science helps shape the research and scientific speculation that set James Rollins books apart.

The exotic locales of James Rollins novels have emerged as a hybrid between imagination, research, and James’ extensive travels throughout the United States and Europe, as well as New Zealand, the South Pacific, China, Southeast Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America. Recent travel includes book tours and stops across the country and several European nations to meet readers and give talks, seminars, and media interviews.

In recent years, much of James’ travel has involved meeting readers in small and large groups, at writing and fan conferences, and even aboard seagoing “seminars.” James’ mentoring temperament and coaching skills have made him a sought-out writing instructor and guest speaker for workshops, symposia, conventions, and other forums throughout the country. He is among the core faculty of the annual Maui Writer’s Conference and Retreat.

James Rollins is the author of seven thrillers in the bestselling Sigma Force series (Sandstorm, Map of Bones, Black Order, The Judas Strain, The Last Oracle, The Doomsday Key, and The Devil Colony); six individual adventure thrillers; the blockbuster movie novelization, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull; and the Jake Ransom middle grade series (Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow, Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx, and more coming in 2013). The eighth Sigma Force adventure, Bloodline, is coming in Summer 2012.

In 2005, James joined other luminaries in the genre to create the International Thriller Writers, Inc. ITW recognizes and promotes the thriller genre, provides opportunities for mentoring, education, and collegiality among authors and industry professionals, and grants awards for excellence in thriller writing. James is currently the Co-President of ITW, serving alongside Steve Berry. (From Author’s Bio)

Rebecca Cantrell

Rebecca Cantrell

 Rebecca Cantrell’s Hannah Vogel mystery/thriller novels have won the Bruce Alexander and Macavity awards and been nominated for the Barry and RT Reviewers Choice awards; her critically-acclaimed cell phone novel, iDrakula, was nominated for the APPY award and listed on Booklist’s Top 10 Horror Fiction for Youth. She and her husband and son just left Hawaii’s sunny shores for adventures in Berlin. Find Rebecca Cantrell on Facebook, Twitter, and at Authors Website.

 

Blood Infernal

(2015)
(The third book in the Order of the Sanguines series)
A novel by Rebecca Cantrell and James Rollins

Blood infernal

As an escalating scourge of grisly murders sweeps the globe, archaeologist Erin Granger must decipher the truth behind an immortal prophecy foretold in the Blood Gospel, a tome written by Christ and lost for centuries: The shackles of Lucifer have been loosened, and his Chalice remains lost. It will take the light of all three to forge the Chalice anew and banish him again to his eternal darkness. With the Apocalypse looming, Erin must again join forces with Army Sergeant Jordan Stone and Father Rhun Korza to search for a treasure lost for millennia. But the prize has already fallen into the hands of their enemy, a demon named Legion, before whom even the walls of the Vatican will fall.

The search for the key to salvation will take Erin and the others across centuries and around the world, from the dusty shelves of the Vatican’s secret archives to lost medieval laboratories, where ancient alchemies were employed to horrific ends. All the while, they are hunted, besieged by creatures of uncanny skill and talent. As clues are dug free from ancient underground chapels and found frozen in icy mountain caverns, Erin will discover that the only hope for victory lies in an impossible act–one that will destroy not only her, but all she loves. To protect the world, Erin must walk through the very gates of Hell and face the darkest of enemies: Lucifer himself.

With The Blood Gospel, the first novel in the Order of the Sanguines series, James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell combined science, myth, and religion to introduce a breathtaking world where miracles hold new meaning and the fight for good over evil is far more complicated than we ever dreamed. And now, in this epic conclusion to the Sanguines trilogy, Blood Infernal, they take us to the very pit of Hell itself, making us peer into the abyss and face our greatest fears, to answer the ultimate question: what price will we pay for true salvation?

Review

When i first heard about this series i worried that it was just another vampire series, that it might be a bit of true blood band wagon jumping. But books 1&2 soon put paid to that. This book 3 is a bitter sweet experience, endings are always tough with a really good series, and this is one that has been a favorite for a couple of years, ending can however be complicated, can the author (s) get it right?

Yes is the answer, James Rollins is one of my favorite thriller writers, and having read Rebecca Cantrell’s Tesla books i can see the where and why the blending of talents has worked so well. Its not that one is better than the other, its similar to when Feist and Wurts got together and wrote the empire trilogy, a set of books that took both authors beyond their normal writing. This is what i feel has happened again here.

Each and every book in this series has been an original action packed supernatural thriller and Blood Infernal is no different. But more important its a fitting and sublime end to a wonderful series. In any thriller like this there is a risk of going OTT, of taking the action beyond the mildly plausible, even with the supernatural you need to avoid that risk. Both these authors avoid doing that with style and panache, keeping the reader on the edge of their seat through-out. So many teasing tit bits from biblical myth brought forth and used in this story, so much action and so much energy and emotion. The characters will make you laugh and cry out in surprise, gasp and sob in anguish. Its going to be up there with my favorite books at the end of this year.

Very highly recommended for this book and this splendid series.

(Parm)

Series
Sigma Force
1. Sandstorm (2004)
2. Map of Bones (2005)
3. Black Order (2006)
4. The Judas Strain (2007)
5. The Last Oracle (2008)
6. The Doomsday Key (2009)
6.5. The Skeleton Key (2011)
7. The Devil Colony (2010)
7.5. Tracker (2012)
8. Bloodline (2012)
9. The Eye of God (2013)
10. The Sixth Extinction (2014)
11. The Bone Labyrinth (2015)
The Doomsday Key / The Last Oracle (omnibus) (2011)
The Sigma Force Novels (omnibus) (2013)
Sigma Force Novels 1 (omnibus) (2014)
SandstormMap of BonesBlack OrderThe Judas Strain
The Last OracleThe Doomsday KeyThe Skeleton KeyThe Devil Colony
TrackerBloodlineThe Eye of GodThe Sixth Extinction
The Doomsday Key / The Last OracleThe Sigma Force NovelsSigma Force Novels 1
Jake Ransom
1. Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow (2009)
2. Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx (2010)
Jake Ransom Complete Collection (omnibus) (2014)
Jake Ransom and the Skull King's ShadowJake Ransom and the Howling SphinxJake Ransom Complete Collection
Order of the Sanguines (with Rebecca Cantrell)
0.5. City of Screams (2012)
1. The Blood Gospel (2013)
1.5. Blood Brothers (2013)
2. Innocent Blood (2013)
3. Blood Infernal (2015)
City of ScreamsThe Blood GospelBlood BrothersInnocent BloodBlood Infernal
Tucker Wayne (with Grant Blackwood)
1. The Kill Switch (2014)
2. War Hawk (2015)
The Kill Switch
Novels
Subterranean (1999)
Excavation (2000)
Deep Fathom (2001)
Amazonia (2002)
Ice Hunt (2003)
Altar of Eden (2009)
SubterraneanExcavationDeep FathomAmazoniaIce HuntAltar of Eden
Novellas
The Devil’s Bones: Cotton Malone vs. Gray Pierce (2014)(with Steve Berry)
The Devil's Bones: Cotton Malone vs. Gray Pierce
Series contributed to
Indiana Jones (Films)
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull(2008)
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

 

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Filed under Action/ Adventure Thrillers, James Rollins, Rebecca Cantrell, Supernatural, Thrillers

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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James Rollins: The Kill switch (review)

James Rollins

rollins

(James Czajkowski)
(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.

Book Description

kill switch

Who does the U.S. government call upon when a mission requires perfect stealth, execution, and discretion? Meet the newest recruits to the expanding Sigma Force universe–former Army Ranger Tucker Wayne and his stalwart companion, Kane, a military working dog of exceptional abilities — in:

THE KILL SWITCH

The mission seems simple enough: extract a pharmaceutical magnate from Russian soil, a volatile man who holds the secret to a deadly bioweapon. But nothing is as it appears to be. A conspiracy of world-shattering scope unravels as Tucker and Kane struggle to keep one move ahead of their deadly enemies.

From the frozen steppes of Russia to the sun-blasted mountains of South Africa and Namibia, a biological threat millions of years in the making strikes out at the heart of America. All that stands in the way from a global apocalypse: one man and his dog. But can even Tucker and Kane thwart an ecological menace out of the ancient past to save the world’s future?

Review

Every Rollins is a thriller I look forward too, but when I saw this one I was slightly concerned, the Grant Blackwood link smacked of a James Patterson change of pace. I liked Patterson in the early years, but his “shared books” were always slightly wrong, not quite up to the class of the solo books.

The Kill Switch isn’t the best book i have read by Rollins, but it is a really fun, Interesting and powerful thriller, it still has the Sigma spin and drive. The co-authoring doesn’t diminish the writing, it feels like a Rollins through and through.

This book has an interesting POV style with the switch from Tucker our main character to his partner, a dog, in the form of Kane. The dogs POV could have been a really dodgy gimmick, but it think the authors get the tone just right, smart but still an animal. The plot has plenty of twists and turns and the feel of the co-locations of the book is impeccable. From Russia to South Africa, the author has clearly done his research, i froze in Russia, i cooked in Africa. One of the regular triumphs of a Rollins book is that every side character is complete and one you feel emotinally tied too, from traitors to sub drivers, to the brothers who assist Tucker in Africa all are so well written you could enjoy a book about any of them.

The wild apocalyptic plot as ever has the right amount of plausibility in it to add the fear factor and the “what if” niggling doubt. All in all it is a well rounded fun thriller, one that will delight Rollins fans.

Recommenced

(Parm)

Sigma Force

1. Sandstorm (2004)
2. Map of Bones (2005)
3. Black Order (2006)
4. The Judas Strain (2007)
5. The Last Oracle (2008)
6. The Doomsday Key (2009)
6.5. The Skeleton Key (2011)
7. The Devil Colony (2011)
7.5. Tracker (2012)
8. Bloodline (2012)
9. The Eye of God (2013)
10. The Sixth Extinction (2014)
The Doomsday Key / The Last Oracle (omnibus) (2011)
The Sigma Force Novels (omnibus) (2013)

SandstormMap of BonesBlack OrderThe Judas StrainThe Last OracleThe Doomsday KeyThe Skeleton KeyThe Devil ColonyTrackerBloodlineThe Eye of GodThe Sixth ExtinctionThe Doomsday Key / The Last OracleThe Sigma Force Novels


Jake Ransom

1. Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow (2009)
2. Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx (2010)

Jake Ransom and the Skull King's ShadowJake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx

Order of the Sanguines (with Rebecca Cantrell)
0.5. City of Screams (2012)
1. The Blood Gospel (2013)
1.5. Blood Brothers (2013)
2. Innocent Blood (2013)

City of ScreamsThe Blood GospelBlood BrothersInnocent Blood

 

Tucker Wayne (with Grant Blackwood)
1. The Kill Switch
 (2014)

The Kill Switch

 

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Rebecca Cantrell and James Rollins: Innocent Blood (2013) Review

The Author’s

James Rollins

rollins

JAMES ROLLINS is the New York Times bestselling author of international thrillers, translated into more than forty languages.  His Sigma series has been lauded as one of the “top crowd pleasers” (New York Times) and one of the “hottest summer reads” (People Magazine). In each novel, acclaimed for its originality, Rollins unveils unseen worlds, scientific breakthroughs, and historical secrets–and he does it all at breakneck speed and with stunning insight. James Rollins decided to become a writer as a boy immersed in the scientific adventures of Doc Savage, the wonders of Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, and pulps such as The Shadow, The Spider, and The Avenger. He honed his storytelling skills early, spinning elaborate tales that were often at the heart of pranks played on his brothers and sisters.

Although his talent emerged and grew, writing was not James’ original profession. Before he would set heroes and villains on harrowing adventures, he embarked on a career in veterinary medicine, graduating from the University of Missouri and establishing a successful veterinary. This hands-on knowledge of medicine and science helps shape the research and scientific speculation that set James Rollins books apart.

The exotic locales of James Rollins novels have emerged as a hybrid between imagination, research, and James’ extensive travels throughout the United States and Europe, as well as New Zealand, the South Pacific, China, Southeast Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America. Recent travel includes book tours and stops across the country and several European nations to meet readers and give talks, seminars, and media interviews.

In recent years, much of James’ travel has involved meeting readers in small and large groups, at writing and fan conferences, and even aboard seagoing “seminars.” James’ mentoring temperament and coaching skills have made him a sought-out writing instructor and guest speaker for workshops, symposia, conventions, and other forums throughout the country. He is among the core faculty of the annual Maui Writer’s Conference and Retreat.

James Rollins is the author of seven thrillers in the bestselling Sigma Force series (Sandstorm, Map of Bones, Black Order, The Judas Strain, The Last Oracle, The Doomsday Key, and The Devil Colony); six individual adventure thrillers; the blockbuster movie novelization, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull; and the Jake Ransom middle grade series (Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow, Jake Ransom and the Howling Sphinx, and more coming in 2013). The eighth Sigma Force adventure, Bloodline, is coming in Summer 2012.

In 2005, James joined other luminaries in the genre to create the International Thriller Writers, Inc. ITW recognizes and promotes the thriller genre, provides opportunities for mentoring, education, and collegiality among authors and industry professionals, and grants awards for excellence in thriller writing. James is currently the Co-President of ITW, serving alongside Steve Berry. (From Author’s Bio)

Rebecca Cantrell

Rebecca Cantrell

 Rebecca Cantrell’s Hannah Vogel mystery/thriller novels have won the Bruce Alexander and Macavity awards and been nominated for the Barry and RT Reviewers Choice awards; her critically-acclaimed cell phone novel, iDrakula, was nominated for the APPY award and listed on Booklist’s Top 10 Horror Fiction for Youth. She and her husband and son just left Hawaii’s sunny shores for adventures in Berlin. Find Rebecca Cantrell on Facebook, Twitter, and at Authors Website.

Innocent Blood (2013)

(The second book in the Order of the Sanguines series)
A novel by Rebecca Cantrell and James Rollins

Innocent Blood

Innocent Blood

A vicious attack at a ranch in California thrusts archaeologist Erin Granger back into the folds of the Sanguines, an immortal order founded on the blood of Christ and tasked with protecting the world from the beasts haunting its shadows and waiting to break free into the sunlight.  Following the prophetic words found in the Blood Gospel–a tome written by Christ and lost for centuries–Erin must join forces with Army Sergeant Jordan Stone and the dark mystery that is Father Rhun Korza to discover and protect a boy believed to be an angel given flesh.

But an enigmatic enemy of immense power and terrifying ambition seeks the same child–not to save the world, but to hasten its destruction.  For any hope of victory, Erin must discover the truth behind Christ’s early years and understand His first true miracle, an event wrapped in sin and destruction, an act that yet remains unfulfilled and holds the only hope for the world.

The search for the truth will take Erin and the others across centuries and around the world, from the dusty plains of the Holy Land to the icy waters of the Arctic Ocean, from the catacombs of Rome to an iron fortress in the Mediterranean Sea, and at last to the very gates of Hell itself, where their destiny–and the fate of mankind–awaits.

With The Blood Gospel, the first novel in the Order of the Sanguines series, James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell breathtakingly combined science, myth, and religion and introduced a world where miracles hold new meaning and the fight for good over evil is far more complicated than we ever dreamed. In Innocent Blood they again take us to the edge of destruction . . . and into the deepest reaches of imagination.

Review:

Review of book one Blood Gospel

A second book is always a concern, was the first a flash in the pan? or will book two be w bridge to book three and the finale of the trilogy? The fact of Innocent blood is its neither, its a fully fledged wonderful thriller, a book that could stand alone and do so as one of the best of its genre this year (personally i would read Blood Gospel first though).

As in book one we follow the perils of The Warrior of Man (Jordan) the Woman of Learning (Erin) and the Knight of Christ Father Rhun, the trio of prophecy confused by the death of the last of the line of Bathory? The first angel needs to be found to fulfill the prophecy, the Damnatus has his own agenda and wants to bring about the ruin of all, Rasputin is back and up to his old tricks, and Cardinal Bernard still thinks he can control destiny/ prophecy.

This book see’s the culmination of centuries of prophecy, and manipulation, history guided by two hands but with separate goals, The Order of the Sanguines are not the only immortals in the world.

The thing i love about James Rollins books is the flight of fancy, the dazzling and fantastic journey all his books take you on, occasionally that can be bordering on the edge of the imagination. What i love about this series is that despite the vampires, and the angels, the miracles and the secret world, it all feels so much more grounded, so real. I have to put that down to the influence of Rebecca Cantrell. Its like a perfect confluence of writing style and skill. It happened once before for me in a fantasy series with Raymond Feist and Janny Wurts, both splendid writers, but paired for a trilogy they produced one of the most remarkable fantasy series i have ever read. For the vampire Genre this is turning into something similar.

A truly splendid and terrifying world hidden in plain sight, believable while at the same time fantastical imagining.

very highly recommended

(Parm)

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Filed under James Rollins, Rebecca Cantrell, Supernatural, Thrillers