Book Review: Relic by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

This book is the first of the Pendergast series, and it was initially published in 1995 by Tor Books. According to several sources, this book has sold over a million copies to date.

This book isn’t just about Special Agent AXL Pendergast of the FBI New Orleans Office. There’s a small cast including a Journalist for the Times, a graduate student working at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, and several others. I especially like Lieutenant Vincent “Vinny” D’Agosta of the NYPD and the very interesting Pendergast.

The story is about an ill fated expedition into the rain forests of the Amazon Basin where one of the researchers was looking for a tribe said not to exist. Finding signs of them, he and several of his party members followed the signs and, things didn’t go as planned.

Fast forwarding to the present, the American Museum of Natural History is preparing for a huge exhibit called “Superstition” to open in grand style. Unfortunately, two young boys are found dead in one of the many stairwells in the museum, and the place is locked down by Lt. D’Agosta. Not long after, a very singular man appears dressed in a black suit, and he eventually introduces himself as Special Agent Pendergast of the FBI.

With a distinctly Southern accent and gentlemanly manners more suited for the late 1800s than for modern New York, Pendergast is interesting, amusing and irritating in turns – both to the reader and to his fellow cast in the story.

“You see, when someone says “it’s impossible,’ I have this very bad habit, I can’t help myself, I immediately contradict that person in the most positive terms possible. A very bad habit, but one that I find hard to break.” – Special Agent Pendergast The Relic.

I won’t spoil the book for you – I have better manners than that. I do recommend this book highly, and I ask that you don’t take my word for it. Check the book out at the library or find a copy cheap at a thrift store(you can always donate it back or give it away later) and read it for yourself.

This is a well paced story with the right blend of thriller, horror and murder mystery with some history thrown in to spice things up a bit. The cast of characters have their own little side stories as well, and I think this adds to the story rather than detracting as many critics have claimed. There is a reason for all the little side trips, but I’ll leave that for you to figure out for yourself.

I give this a 5 out of a 5 rating.

Also, this book is available in all forms including audiobook so I hope you find a way to enjoy it.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

Ready Player One – Movie Review

This is a Warner Bros. film that is based on the book by the same name. It was directed by Stephen Spielberg. It stars Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, Lena Waithe, T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg, Phillip Zhao, and Win Morisaki. It was released in 2018.

This movie is a futuristic sci-fi set in 2045. The world is overcrowded and pretty miserable. They use online games as a way of escaping as well as a worldwide hub called Oasis. Oasis is a pure world for gaming, no ads, no marketing just fun. It provides access to even retro games like Adventure Quest and Pong. Avatars are fully customizable and can be anyone/anything the player wants.

The creator of the game died and willed that the winner of a contest he designed would win control of the Oasis and all it’s games. The contest has clues leading to three keys, and each key leads to another area of the contest with its clues and keys. The clues are based on the life of the creator and all sorts of data on his life is available in the Archives of the games should the players want to go through them. The clues are very tricky as are the games you have to beat.

I was with my gentleman friend when it was on cable, and we only caught the last 30 minutes of it. We had fun trying to identify as many of the avatars from our days playing old school games, and there were quite a few of them. The main character uses an avatar that looks a lot like those used in the Final Fantasy franchise.

Just recently, I was able to watch the entire show, and I quite enjoyed it. I liked the plot, and the idea behind the movie. It was geared more towards kids I guess, but it was still a great movie to watch. The actors were quite good and though I didn’t recognize any of the kids, I did recognize two of the adult male actors. They did fantastic jobs in their supporting roles as the antagonists.

I highly recommend seeing this game if just for the fun of seeing old games from your past – if you’re older than 40 anyway. 🙂 Don’t take my word for it, check it out, and I hope you have as much fun watching it as I did.

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!!

The Steel Kiss – Jeffery Deaver

My copy of this book is a trade paperback printed in 2016 by Hachette Book Group.  The Copyright of 2016 is held by Gunner Publications LLC.  This story was originally published in hardback and ebook by Grand Central Publishing in 2016.

As usual, Mr. Deaver does not fail to put in some plot twists. One is very ingenuous as it’s in what he doesn’t say 🙂  I can’t say more without giving away the story so, I won’t.  The story is a real attention grabber as well because it makes you think: what if?

The story is about a man who is using remote access to cloud based “brains” to kill people from afar.  This same man also uses a ball peen hammer for close up work.  Lincoln Rhyme, our fearless quadraplegic detective, has retired from police work to teach and persue more “civilian” work.  Detective Amelia Sachs, his lover and partner, is not happy about that but is working out of police headquarters despite him.  Lincoln takes on an intern as he accepts a job helping a family whose father and sole provider is killed by what appears to be a faulty escalator at a local mall.  Detective Sachs is hunting for a killer who crushes people’s heads in and whose unusual physical attributes still don’t help her find him.  The action revs up almost from the get go and runs almost full throttle all the way to the end!!  I read this one in one sitting as well!!

Love Mr. Deaver’s work!!  Can’t you tell? 😀

I strongly recommend this book to anyone who loves crime books and whodunits!  Still, don’t take my word for it.  Get a copy from your local library and try it out for yourself!

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver!  Maybe you should get a tattoo to keep from being possessed. 😀

15TH Affair – James Patterson and Maxine Paetro

I’m a big James Patterson fan, and I’ve become a fan of his teaming up with Maxine Paetro for this series.  I must confess to only having read the first two books in The Women’s Murder Club series before reading this one, but I do plan to fix that by finding the rest of the series as soon as I can afford to.

My copy is a paperback – trade size – and the story is roughly 357 pages.  There’s the usual About The Authors in the back as well as some other things in there the reader will like.  This copy was published by Grand Central Publishing,a division of Hachette Book Group Inc., and has a copyright of 2016.  The hardcover version was originally published by Little, Brown and Company in May 2016.

Now, this story centers around Detective Lindsay Boxer of the San Francisco Police Department.  She’s married with a baby girl and a dog, as well as a wonderful neighbor/nanny and her murder club friends.

A murder and a disappearing woman threaten her marriage and, at one point, her life!  The book is full of twists and turns as well as some strong feels as Lindsay works the case and tries to deal with her life crumbling around her.  The action is fantastic and nothing is wasted as everything you learn leads to something else – sometimes unexpected things!

I really enjoyed the book, and I think you will too.  Just don’t take my word for it – read it for yourself! 🙂

See you on the flipside and don’t forget your towel and sonic screwdriver.  If you can’t have a Tardis, get a black 1969 Impala or, my personal fave, a cherry red 1969 Firebird!