Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Adventurous Reading - Book Review

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?


Kailana said...

Yay, my friend sent me the link to your blog, and I adore James Rollins. I found Sandstorm good, but my favourite by him is Amazonia. It is a GREAT book. I am reading Deep Fathom by him right now. I also have read Deep Impact and Subterranean. I could have all this books read by now... but I don't want to rush it. Sandstorm is a tentative beginning to a series he recently released. You don't have to read it, though, to read the others. I hope you read more of him. He is a great thriller author, and I don't even like thrillers.

Susan Vaughan said...

Thanks for your recommendation. I'll have to pick up Rollins's Amazonia next. I've started Map of Bones and love it so far.

Allison Brennan said...

Susan, I think Jim is fantastic. He's from Sacramento (like me) and I agree about how he portrays women. Not all men can write strong women without the women seeming too masculine!

I haven't read all his books, though I greatly enjoyed SANDSTORM. I have BLACK ORDER on my shelf right now, but haven't gotten to it yet.

K said...

Thanks, Susan! I've been looking for a book for my husband's stocking. This sounds like a good choice.