I just love fabulous adventure stories, and I enjoy even more the ones that also have interesting characters and a strong romance. I'm even trying my hand at writing one after a trip to the Yucatan part of Mexico for research. On Shaky Ground is a single title romantic adventure, not a category romance, a sort of reverse of Romancing the Stone. Instead of searching for something, my characters are returning a Mayan artifact with a curse, but I'm still writing and plotting, so don't look for it yet.
The reason I bring this up is that I've just finished reading a marvelous author who is not new, but new to me. James Rollins has published seven thrillers, but I've just discovered him. If anyone needs a book idea for a holiday gift, check out his books.
The book I read is titled Sandstorm (Avon 2004). Safia al-Maaz is a brilliant and beautiful museum curator who travels to Oman to search for a lost city, where something both powerful and dangerous has lain hidden for centuries. Her companions are an ensemble cast, including her daring friend, Kara, Lady Kensington, and her ex-fiancé, a dashing adventurer named Omaha Dunn. In a touch of delicious wit, Rollins has Kara pretend to forget his name and refer to him as Indiana. Other fascinating men and women round out the daring ensemble--among them, agents of a secret security agency called Sigma, and a brilliant and conflicted villain. I was impressed at Rollins's ability to portray women in strong heroine and villain roles. Danger and intrigue propel the plot at a breakneck pace, but romance and character development play important parts. I had to suspend disbelief for some of the fantastic events but the story was too entertaining to mind. The next of Rollins's books I have is Map of Bones. I can't wait!
Has anyone else read Rollins's books? Any recommendations?