When two grotesquely deformed skeletons are found deep in the mud off the Manhattan shoreline, museum curator Margo Green is called in to aid the investigation. Margo must once again team up with police lieutenant D'Agosta and FBI agent Pendergast, as well as the brilliant Dr. Frock, to try and solve the puzzle. The trail soon leads deep underground, where they will face the awakening of a slumbering nightmare.
Prolong the suspense: listen to the first book, Relic.
©2008 Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child; (P)2008 Brilliance Audio
The netherworld of New York City...proves as shuddery a setting for the authors' latest scientific monster mash as the American Museum of Natural History did for their bestselling Relic, to which this is the sequel. (Publishers Weekly)
"This should do for the New York subway system what Jaws did for Long Island beaches." (Booklist)
"Dick Hill's reading of this fascinating sequel to Relic builds the suspense and horror." (AudioFile)
Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child pull out the stops in this superb sequel to Relic. Dick Hill's skillful narration effectively draws you into the unrelenting suspense and excitement of this white-knuckle edge-of-your-seat thrill ride. His voice characterizations and pacing mirror the anxiety and emotions of the characters. You feel as if you're standing beside them. Five stars - no argument. It's highly suggested that you read Relic first. (Relic was Preston and Child's debut collaboration.)
Reliquary also marks the second appearance of Agent Pendergast (Relic), a character most readers have elevated to the status of a modern Sherlock Holmes with a touch of James Bond thrown in. Subsequent novels by the authors have reprised Agent Pendergast character six times. If you haven't read the novels of Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, you're in for a treat! But one important suggestion: UNABRIDGED ONLY! Read them all.
I really enjoyed "The Relic" but "Reliquary" was much better on so many levels. The writing is smart and scientific but I never felt lost. There is much more action in this novel than the Relic and the suspense is much higher. One of the better novels I've listened to
"The Reliquary" is a satisfying continuation of the characters and events in "The Relic."
Agent Pendergast is further developed as a flawless character, a sort of Gumbo-eating James Bond, couture martial arts master. The setting in New York's underground is compelling and its inhabitants are certainly interesting. I did feel that the last quarter of the book failed to reach the exciting crescendo hinted at by the first 3/4. This is because the big revelation dropped towards the novel's climax was a bit too far-fetched, even by standard of unbelief set in "The Relic."
Despite its shortcomings, "The Reliquary" is an entertaining installment in the Agent Pendergast series.
This is an intriguing horror story with scary monsters and fun characters. It is full of implausible and impossible scenarios, but once past that, the mysteries and scary moments work because the authors take the time to flesh out interesting characters and develop scenes that carry the reader along.
Another thing the writers do well is dig up interesting facts and history to work into the story. Aside from the insights into the workings and politics of a big city museum, there are secret tunnels and other things I've never heard of before in this book, and on further research I learned they were true.
It's like a kids story for grownups--danger, mystery, heroes, monsters, secret fortresses just beyond the everyday world. Great stuff.
The writing is barely adequate, but that's not unusual for best sellers these days. The reader is ok. He's not as good as the reader of "Relic," but he doesn't hurt the story.
Overall, I loved it, and I wish Audible had more of the Pendergast books unabridged.
I absolutely love the Agent Pendergast series! I hope Audible adds the rest of these great books to their line up. This is a great mystery that I had a hard time turning off, because I wanted to know what was going to happen next.
The only reason I gave this 4 stars instead of 5 is that Rene Auberjonois's voice for Agent Pendergast is so perfect that every other narrator's attempt to capture his voice pales in comparison. Plus, his voice for Bill Smithback is a touch on the annoying side. But these things are so minor that they do not detract from the great story at all!
The story is fine but I would say read the book, don't get this audio version. The male voices are nasal and irritating, and they don't fit the characters as they have been presented in other books. When the book tells what someone is thinking this horrible sound effect is used, sort of like they are shouting from the bottom of a well.
My taste in books seems to run along a space-crime continuum
I enjoyed Relic, and enjoyed this sequel even more. Both books combine silly and far-fetched action-adventure with a (*very* tenuous) link to "real" science. Their strength, aside from likable lead characters, are the well-researched, fact-based settings. In Relic it was the Museum of Natural History; here it is the subway tunnels and sewage/drainage systems honeycombed beneath New York City. Agent Pendergast (who has a larger role in this second installment of the "series" than he did in Relic) and friends must travel this labyrinth to defeat a horde of mutant monsters and Save The World. I am a Dick Hill fan (and I don't say that about many American readers), so that added to my enjoyment of the selection.
The story is a good one, an early preston, Child book ,but still good. The narrator done by Dick Hill is annoying. There are many mispronounced words and almost every character has a weasly Bronx accent. I like Preston/Child's later choice for the narrator Rene Auberjonois.
Relic and Reliquary are two excellent modern/sci-fi thriller books; and Pentergast is a wonderful character. The only reason I'm giving this book such a low rating is the narrator.
The Narration in Relic was great, you could identify the characters easily. Margo was light, Pentergast had the southern drawl, Frock was rather huffy, Smithback fun and sarcastic, and DaGosta was gruff.
This new narrator throws that all out. Smithback sounds nasally and whiny not sarcastic at all. DaGosta lost his gruffness. I just couldn't continue and read the book instead. Like others I'll have to stay away from Dick Hill narrated books.
This is a cleverly written book with some very graphic details. However, this narrator has obviously not heard any of the other stories in the series. He is not consistent with previous narrators with his pronounciations of names and places. He makes characters that are likeable in other stories, creepy and slimey. The publisher should consider being more consistent with narrators, as they can make or break a book. I have heard other stories this narrator has done, and I thought they were fine, but with this series of stories, I am not impressed with his distortion of the characters.
"Superb follow up"
You must read the relic first to really get this book, but this book too has a brilliant plot and characters. Unusual mix of sci fi, adventure and murder. This book is true escapism, brilliantly read and superbly written. Hours of true escapism at its best.
Like James Cameron's Aliens, this takes the lone monster hide and seek story of the original, and turns it up to a full on war.
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