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Seven Deadly Wonders
by Matthew Reilly
Pocket Books, $7.99, 547pp
Publication Date: December 26, 2006
This is an international thriller!!! Full of action! Ancient wonders! Bad guys of all nations! A band of misfit heroes!

And as you might deduce from the title, this novel deals with tracking down the remains of the Seven Ancient Wonders of the World: The Lighthouse of Alexandria, the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, Colossus of Rhodes, The Great Pyramid of Cheops, The Hanging Gardens of Babylon , The Statue of Zeus at Olympia and The Temple of Artemis in Ephesus .

This reads like a very high-speed, high-adrenaline computer game with just a dollop of Indiana Jones. It is non-stop thrills dodging thundering boulders, jumping quicksand pits, avoiding crocodiles, boiling mud and yes, snakes. There are even Nazis. The heroes fly a souped-up 747 stolen from Saddam Hussein and are pursued by a cabal of evil master minds supported by a veritable United Nations of bad guys utilizing thousands of soldiers and military equipment.

The hero Jack West Jr. and his band of stalwarts are trying to keep a consortium of nations from accumulating all the pieces of the capstone of the Great Pyramid. Made of gold, many pieces are buried with a part of one of the seven ancient wonders of the world and when put together, they will either fend off a global apocalypse or give one nation unbelievable power, provided a certain ritual is performed.

And oh, two children born of the Oracle of Siwa are crucial to the ritual.

I mean the unremitting hellacious action and vivid imagery just zips along with little introspection or back story.

I enjoyed it for the clever tale it was.

BUT---the editor at Simon & Schuster who handled this edition needs to be taken out and shaken like a dog shakes off water. What was with all the hysterical italics and the insane over abundance of exclamation points!!! It really got irritating as if I was listening to someone read the novel in a breathless, high-pitched squeal. Continuously.

One of the most annoying editing jobs I’ve ever read. ~~ Sue Martin

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