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Map of Bones
Sigma Force Series , #2

by James Rollins

    A surprise attack on a German cathedral leaves hundreds dead, giving new meaning to the term "mass murder." The only survivor describes a scene that leaves investigators puzzled enough to involve Sigma, an elite and highly secretive black ops unit, dedicated to defending America from its most hidden enemies. The investigating team is led by Grayson Pierce, a stony, charismatic warrior scientist considered to be one of the unit's best field agents.

His team discovers that the Dragon Court, a rogue Gnostic sect devoted to the teachings of Saint Thomas, utilized the hidden properties of one of the world's precious resources to carry out the attack and unleash a power dating back to the time of Moses. However, this attack was only a preview of much bigger things to come. Grayson and his team soon find themselves immersed in a race across Europe, riddled with as much danger as action, and the security of the world waiting at the finish line.

This book can be accurately described as Indiana Jones meets Dan Brown, but with more action than the former and more depth than the latter. The author clearly showed his knack for researching his subject matter and utilized his characters well to convey that research. The main character is almost instantly familiar for anyone who is a fan of the archeologist made famous by Harrison Ford and George Lucas, which increases the hero's likeability factor. The supporting cast is equally familiar and well-utilized. There are the wise-cracking yet capable teammates, the sultry yet tough heroine, and the well-versed Uncle Vigor, a Vatican intelligence operative used by the author to convey information to the reader.

The action is quite fast-paced and seemingly non-stop through the first third of the book. Such a pace threatens to leave the reader behind in confusion, but the overall story doesn't suffer. All in all, the book may not be of "read-again" material, but is well worth reading the first time, especially for those who enjoy action/adventure and Biblical history.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Sandstorm #1
Map of Bones #2
Black Order, #3
The Judas Strain,
The Last Oracle, #5
The Doomsday Key,
The Devil Colony
, #7
#8 [review 1] [review 2]
The Eye of God #9
The Sixth Extinction #10
Seventh Plague #11

The Book

April 25, 2006 (Reprint edition)
Mass Market Paperback
Espionage / Thriller

The Reviewer

John Washburn
Reviewed 2006
NOTE: Reviewer John Washburn is the author of When Evil Prospers.
© 2006