Monday, August 24, 2009

Guest Review: The Doomsday Key

Summary: At Princeton University, a famed geneticist dies inside a biohazard lab. In Rome, a Vatican archaeologist is found dead in St. Peter's Basilica. In Africa, a U.S. senator's son is slain outside a Red Cross camp. The three murders on three continents bear a horrifying connection: all the victims are marked by a Druidic pagan cross burned into their flesh.

The bizarre murders thrust Commander Gray Pierce and Sigma Force into a race against time to solve a riddle going back centuries, to a ghastly crime against humanity hidden within a cryptic medieval codex. The first clue is discovered inside a mummified corpse buried in an English peat bog—a gruesome secret that threatens America and the world.

Aided by two women from his past—one his ex lover, the other his new partner—Gray must piece together the horrifying truth. But the revelations come at a high cost, and to save the future, Gray will have to sacrifice one of the women at his side. That alone might not be enough, as the true path to salvation is revealed in a dark prophecy of doom.

Sigma Force confronts humankind's greatest threat in an adventure that races from the Roman Coliseum to the icy peaks of Norway, from the ruins of medieval abbeys to the lost tombs of Celtic kings. The ultimate nightmare is locked within a talisman buried by a dead saint—an ancient artifact known as the Doomsday Key. -- William Morrow

When I received a copy of THE DOOMSDAY KEY by James Rollins, I knew exactly who would appreciate this book -- my good friend Melissa. It's no secret that Mr. Rollins is one of her very favorite authors; and I knew she wanted to read his latest novel. As you can see, I think the book lived up to her expectations:

I was thrilled when my friend, Julie, gave me a copy of THE DOOMSDAY KEY to read and review. I am a huge James Rollins fan and have read all of his books. If you are a lover of fast-paced action/adventures, this book will not disappoint you. Move over Indiana Jones! Back in Doomsday are Commander Grey Pierce and Sigma Force who must save the world from a nefarious powerful group (The Guild) out to control the world’s food supply. Rollins also brings back Rachel Verona, an old love interest of Grey’s and Seichan, a beautiful and dangerous agent, whose motives and allegiance are still murky at best, to round out his cabaret of interesting characters.

What I have always loved about James Rollins is that he almost always weaves a historical or mythical component into his stories. In DOOMSDAY, the plot centers upon a mysterious deadly plague from the past and the threat of unleashing it into the present. Also, seamlessly intertwined is Celtic and Druid lore about a lost ancient race and Saint Malachy’s prophecies detailing all the popes to the end of the world.

One of the things I liked best about this book is how the tangled relationships between Grey, Rachel and Seichan continue to develop and unfold. Still not completely clear is whether or not Seichan is friend or foe. With hints of a moral conscience and glimpses into her past, she is one of my most favorite characters.

Without giving away too much of the story, DOOMSDAY is a fun, archaeological smorgasbord. But it also delves into some very disturbing and thought-provoking issues. For instance, what will happen when and if the world’s population exceeds its food supply? To ensure the continuation of our species, is there a way to ethically manage the world’s population?

I highly recommend THE DOOMSDAY KEY and anything else by James Rollins. In fact, I just bought Jake Ransom and the Skull King’s Shadow, Rollin’s new children’s book for my nine-year old daughter and can’t wait to start reading it with her!

I think this book sounds terrific! A big thanks to Melissa for her awesome review and to the publisher for sending me a copy of this novel!


bermudaonion said...

Great review, Melissa! I love fast paced action/adventure books, so I'm wondering why I've never heard of James Rollins. I'm adding his name to my must read author list.

jezebelsk said...

I just love James Rollins! I can't wait to get my hands on this book. And, I can't believe he's done a kid's book too! Very interesting...

Beth F said...

Thanks Melissa. What a super review. I love archaeological adventures!

S. Krishna said...

Great review! I have this one on my shelf, so I'm glad to know it's good. Thanks Melissa and Julie!