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Publisher's Summary

High in Nepal, a monastery erupts with savagery and madness. Deep in a German mine, abomination wears the innocent face of a child. Hidden in the jungles of Africa, experiments rooted in a dark past have found fertile ground again. Across the frozen peaks of the Himalayas to the diamond fields of the Congo, from the subterranean labs of a lost era to the bright halls of the Smithsonian, Sigma Force will face its most cunning adversaries, its most daunting challenges, and its most dire threat. The very future of mankind will belong to the victor.
For any hope of success, Painter Crowe must make a pact like no other: to align Sigma Force with an old enemy, one beyond redemption. And it will be up to Commander Gray Pierce to find the balance between salvation and damnation, even if it means sacrificing those closest to him. Still, victory is far from certain, for there are riddles that even the greatest minds were never meant to solve.
©2006 Jim Czajkowski (P)2006 HarperCollinsPublishers
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Critic Reviews

"This is Cussler and Ludlum territory with a dash of Dan Brown, sure to please devotees of any of these authors." (Publishers Weekly)
"Why Hollywood hasn't snapped his books up yet is a mystery." (Booklist)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Barry on 07-28-06

Absorbing and Intense

"Black Order" is a wonderful combination of suspense, history, intrigue, terror, and science. I hate using terms like "on the edge of my seat", but that pretty well describes the experience for me.

Fortunately, a scientific background is not necessary to appreciate fully it, as it provides just enough of a sprinkling of scientific fact to make the story plausible. Some of the precepts really make you think, and, if you want to learn more, Rollins provides a short bibliography at the end.

I found the plot twists unexpected (although, in truth, I don't spend much time trying to figure out "what's going to happen" -- I prefer to be surprised). I also found the characters realistic and believable, especially the "bad guys".

Grover Gardner's performance was exceptional, helping to bring the many and varied characters to life, making them seem 3-dimensional. The pace was perfect, as he slowed his rhythm during some of the scientific explanations, giving me that little extra time to absorb them. He also nicely sped up some of the action scenes, adding to the suspense and excitement of the story.

I rated it five stars, and I think James Rollins' story and Grover Gardner's reading earn every one of them.

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14 of 14 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Kathleen on 01-02-07

This Book has Plot!

Coming away disappointed from DeMille's latest "Wild Fire" I landed here and this book has a plot that works, and is based on historical events. The plot simultaneously takes place in several locations around the world including South Africa and starts off at Everest. The story is what held me, and I actually prefer Grover as a narrator and have no problems with his narration it added to the book for me. I was particularly pleased with the scientific mysteries intertwined including the tug between Einstein's theory of relativity and quantum physics. The mystery of the retreat of the Germans and the lost infant detailed in the first chapter is revealed at the end just when you think you have it all, a suprise ending. I loved it.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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