Saturday, August 15, 2015

Title:       The Sixth Extinction [Sigma Force, book 10]
Author:   James Rollins
Rating:   ★★★★1/2
Availability:  National Book Store | Fully Booked | Barnes & Noble | Amazon | Kobo | iTunes
*Thank you to HarperCollins Publishers for the free copy, in exchange for an honest review

Adventure, science, and heretofore unimagined bucket list-worthy places. James Rollins had me reaching for my blanket as I settled in for a few hours of thriller bliss.

Coming from The Eye of God, I expected nothing less from James Rollins' The Sixth Extinction, and my expectations were met. This was a book I expressly requested from the publishers, and I was happy they granted my request. The Sixth Extinction was exciting, engaging, chock full of adventures, and mind-blowing -- elements I've come to expect from Rollins' crafty writing.

A remote military research station broadcasts a frantic distress call that ends with a chilling message: Kill us all. When soldiers arrive to investigate, they discover everyone in the lab is dead—not just the scientists, but every living thing for fifty square miles is annihilated: every animal, plant, and insect, even bacteria. The land is completely sterile—and the blight is spreading.

To prevent the inevitable, Commander Gray Pierce and Sigma must decipher a threat that rises out of the distant past, a time when Antarctica was green and Earth’s life balanced on a knife edge. Following clues from an ancient map rescued from the lost Library of Alexandria, Sigma will make a shocking discovery involving a prehistoric continent, and a new form of death buried under miles of ice.

From millennia-old secrets out of the frozen past to mysteries buried deep in the darkest jungles of today, Sigma will face its greatest challenge yet: stopping the coming extinction of mankind.

But is it already too late?

One of the things I like about books is that they make me aware of new things, like Antarctica's hidden secrets, and developments in science, which are both horrifying and fascinating to discover. (I'm glad Rollins was nice enough to separate fact from fiction at the end of the book!) What I especially liked about The Sixth Extinction is its relevance and timeliness to one of the world's current major issues: global warming, and that it may even be under way. What do you think of that?

Here, new Sigma members are brought to the forefront and highlighted. Two of them found new love, and I have a feeling Jason won't be staying in America for long. But while the Sigma men were strong and capable, it was the women who stood out for me. I loved the ranger, Jenna Beck, who felt more like a protagonist than simply one of the supporting characters. I also love Lisa, who stood firm and was so bad-ass even though she could possibly be severely sentenced for her behavior. Rollins, your women are outstanding.

We are taken through different locations, from the Mono Lake and its surrounds in the US, to Antarctica and its hidden secrets, to the breathtaking tepuis of Brazil. With one book, my adventure bucket list has just increased by three more places.

Admittedly, it was a little dizzying keeping up with all the characters in this book. There was a time I felt that there were too many characters and I had to recall which character was which. I wondered if some characters could be taken out, and if the story would be the same, but it didn't seem like it. I suppose the number is commensurate to the gravity of the story and situation.

The Sixth Extinction was written so well that when the book was finished, I didn't feel like I've been short-changed. Everything was resolutely wrapped, and I felt very satisfied from my reading experience. After having read over a thousand books, that's not something I can say for each one!

With The Sixth Extinction, Rollins has cemented his place in my must-read authors. I can't help but recommend his work to my sci-fi loving friend. And the best part is, I don't have to wait long because his next book, The Bone Labyrinth, is coming out this December. Friends, you know what to give me this December (book store coupons, like always).

How about you, what's the one thriller adventure/sci-fi book you've read that last made your heart race?