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Altar of Eden: A Novel | [James Rollins]

Altar of Eden: A Novel

A master at combining heart-stopping suspense and scientific intrigue, New York Times best-selling author James Rollins returns with a thrilling adventure like no other--a shocking story of cruel genetic experiments done in the name of national security and, most disturbing of all, tied to a secret history of the Book of Genesis.
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Publisher's Summary

A master at combining heart-stopping suspense and scientific intrigue, New York Times best-selling author James Rollins returns with a thrilling adventure like no other--a shocking story of cruel genetic experiments done in the name of national security and, most disturbing of all, tied to a secret history of the Book of Genesis.

Following the fall of Baghdad, two Iraqi boys stumble upon armed men looting the city zoo, opening the floodgates for the smuggling of hundreds of exotic birds, mammals, and reptiles to Western nations. But this crime hides a deeper secret. Amid a hail of bullets, an underground secret weapons lab is ransacked--and something even more horrific is set free. Seven years later, Louisiana state veterinarian Lorna Polk stumbles upon a fishing trawler shipwrecked on a barrier island. The crew is missing or dead, but the boat holds a frightening cargo: a caged group of exotic animals, clearly part of a black market smuggling ring. Yet, something is wrong with these beasts, disturbing deformities that make no sense: a parrot with no feathers, a pair of Capuchin monkeys conjoined at the hip, a jaguar cub with the dentition of a saber-tooth tiger. They also all share one uncanny trait--a disturbingly heightened intelligence.

To uncover the truth about the origin of this strange cargo and the terrorist threat it poses, Lorna must team up with a man who shares a dark and bloody past with her, now an agent of the U.S. Border Patrol, Jack Menard. Together, the two must hunt for a beast that escaped the shipwreck while uncovering a mystery tied to fractal science and genetic engineering, all to expose a horrifying secret that traces back to mankind's earliest roots. But can Lorna stop what is about to be born upon the altar of Eden before it threatens not only the world, but also the very foundation of what it means to be human?

©2010 Jim Czajkowski; (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (317 )
5 star
 (96)
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 (126)
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4.1 (118 )
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4.0 (121 )
5 star
 (47)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (6)
Performance
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  •  
    Dawitski 01-24-10
    Dawitski 01-24-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
    ratings
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    50
    4
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    "Very Enjoyable"

    This was the first audiobook I listened to after the dissapointing "The Lost Symbol" and my second ever female narrated book.

    I will give Paula Christensen a 3.5 star for her crisp voice, engaging narration and not so bad attempt at the Cajun accent. Despite there being more male characters than female, I was able to follow all characters with little to no confusion.

    This books seems to have a two part story, which I would classify as "The Hunt" and "The survival". Its adventurous, action packed, and scientific. This book is more like a 3.5 than a 3.

    I also recommed the "Enhanced" audio version!!!!!

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Shady Shores, TX, United States 03-03-10
    Julie Shady Shores, TX, United States 03-03-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    9
    2
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    "Narrarator makes listening difficult"

    The story while attention grabbing, is lost in the reading. Christensen attempts various southern dialects and unfortunately misses the mark with most. I can usually forgive the voice and get lost in the story, but this time I am forcing myself to listen.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Don LELAND, NC, United States 03-02-10
    Don LELAND, NC, United States 03-02-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Another Solid job from Rollins"

    I've read most of the James Rollins books and was thinking this was another Sigma Force book. The female narrator threw me at first, but one I got into it I realized that Christensen was a good choice, since the book is told mainly through the eyes of the primary female chacter, Lorna Polk. While the characters were all new to me, the story had alot of that feel you come to expect from Rollins, action, mystery, unusual situations. I really enjoyed this read.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Autumn Marina, CA, United States 02-16-10
    Autumn Marina, CA, United States 02-16-10 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    228
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    54
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    "Good Enough"

    I liked it. I felt the idea was better than the execution. The excecution, complete with the cinematic ending and explosions was a bit "made for tv movie" silly. I also feel the plot had a lot of potential. Too much potential to entirely wrap up in one book. A great exercise book, though. I couldn't wait to find out what happened next.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tom McNulty 03-03-10
    Tom McNulty 03-03-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    3
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    "Great Book...Tough Listen"

    I'm a big fan of Rollins and especially enjoy the Sigma series. This novels story line was gripping but I found it extremely difficult to follow because of the lisp of the narrator. I found myself focusing on all of the mispronounced S's as oppose to the storyline.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Brown 01-22-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "I wanted to like it"

    The narration was such a hodge podge of incredibly bad New Orleans, southern, and cajun accents that it made the experience of the book probably seem worse that it actually was.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy New Sweden, ME, United States 02-12-10
    Nancy New Sweden, ME, United States 02-12-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
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    "Poor Reader"

    The story was typical Rollins and enjoyable. However, the reader has an odd cadence and I found myself re-reading lines in my head because the inflection sounded off. Was I the only one who noticed the lisp? As others have said, be prepared to be occasionally distracted by the reader, but otherwise it's good.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 04-19-14 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Good story...terrible narration"
    What did you like best about Altar of Eden? What did you like least?

    The story was interesting and well-written, but the narration was pretty poor -- to the extent that it was distracting.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Paula Christensen’s performances?

    No. If a narrator is going to attempt to recreate regional accents, he or she should do them properly (or not do them at all). The book is set largely in Louisiana, but most of the character sounded like they were from Appalachia rather than from Louisiana.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terry ROY, UT, USA 02-12-13
    Terry ROY, UT, USA 02-12-13 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
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    Story
    "VERY EXCITING AND FAST MOVING"
    Would you listen to Altar of Eden again? Why?

    YES I WILL. FOUND IT TO BE THOUGHT PROVOKING.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Altar of Eden?

    THE ATTACK OF THE TIGER.


    Which character – as performed by Paula Christensen – was your favorite?

    ALL MAJOR CHARACTORS WERE FILLED OUT AND SEEMED TO BE INPORTANT TO THE STORY.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    NO


    Any additional comments?

    VERY GOOD LISTENING. READ VERY WELL

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michele Alpine, UT, United States 12-15-11
    Michele Alpine, UT, United States 12-15-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good Book!"

    This is one of the many books that my hubby and I listen to while driving from Wyoming to Utah! We have enjoyed the 3-4 books that we have read by Mr Rollins.
    Rollins has a very scientific mind and some of his description can be a bit insightful and maybe more than I really need but for someone (like my hubby) who has that type of scientific mind, it is GREAT!
    We have enjoyed the creative spin that Rollins puts on his books and when reading them the time passes quickly!
    Enjoy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 23 results PREVIOUS123NEXT
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  • Angie
    SalisburyUnited Kingdom
    8/17/10
    Overall
    "A different kind of James Rollins"

    As an avid reader/listener of James Rollins I was excited by this new novel. However I nearly abandoned it at the start. It took a few chapters to get into but after that I was hooked. Prefer his Sigma series but still a good author

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Andy Barton
    Appleby Magna, UK
    6/4/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Top Quality Story - Gripping & Interesting"

    Brilliant Book - Interesting & Gripping Story. The background & plot is pushing the boundaries of believability - but all the better for it. Likeable & interesting characters. Definitely recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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