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Publisher's Summary

The largest known meteorite has been discovered, entombed in the earth for millions of years on a frigid, desolate island off the southern tip of Chile. At 4,000 tons, this treasure seems impossible to move.

New York billionaire Palmer Lloyd is determined to have this incredible find for his new museum. Stocking a cargo ship with the finest scientists and engineers, he builds a flawless expedition. But from the first approach to the meteorite, people begin to die. A frightening truth is about to unfold: The men and women of the Rolvaag are not taking this ancient, enigmatic object anywhere. It is taking them.

©2001 Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (P)2010 Hachette

Critic Reviews

"This is a big-boned thriller, one that will make a terrific summer movie as well as a memorable hot-day read." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Lyn
  • OSHKOSH, WISCONSIN, United States
  • 08-10-10

Wonderful, Well researched, Page Turner

These authors certainly did their research! Prompted me to Google certain topics mentioned in book for more information because the items were fascinating: Roaring 60's in Southern Ocean; Panspermia Theory; South Georgia Islands; and some mechanical engineering.

This book is extremely well written and Scott Brick does a wonderful job reading. The characters well developed with plot moving smoothly. It is the best AudioBook I have listened to.

The story is about a billionaire, Palmer Lloyd, who hires a crew of scientists, engineers, and others to retrieve an extremely heavy object from an island off the southern tip of Chile. Lloyd has an oil tanker converted and disguised to sail to Chile to accomplish this task. The object is the scientific find of the 21st century and puts the entire crew who sail in peril...and more.

85 of 89 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

This book just cries for a sequel

I've listened to 435 books from Audible so far and I would have to put this one in my top 10 list. Preston & Child are favorites of mine to begin with but they have scored big time with this one. Like one of the other reviewers I found myself googling locations and topics mentioned in the story as well as following the course of the ship on Google earth. Interesting and exciting from beginning to end. I also liked the addition of the news reports at the end of the book but it just reinforced my feelings that this book must have a sequel.

In respect to the narration by Scott Brick I must disagree with Sandra's review. One of the things I search for on a regular basis are books read by Scott. No ridiculous accents or over blown dramatics or pretending to do female voices, just solid steady narration. His inflections and timing are subtle but effective and the tone of his voice is pleasant whether on earphones or speakers.

I highly recommend this book.

81 of 89 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Cut out the romance attempt

I have read four Preston & Child books, I have liked all of them, but not loved any of them. I am still waiting to read the book that I just can't put down, as I feel they have it in them to write that book. This book has cool theories and adventure and science. It starts out with a prospector discovering the world's heaviest meteorite (or is it a meteorite? and where did it come from?). It is located on an island off the south tip of Chile. A cold bitter land that Darwin visited on his voyage. The first half of the book is about the richest man in the world getting together a team of losers, along with a Mr. perfect to recover this rock without Chile finding out about it. I really liked the first half. In the second half, we get into a couple of love stories (kinda). The love stories are time consuming, not very loving and a total distraction from the story line. Then toward the end we have a ocean chase scene like in Master and Commander and it is very intense and a fast read. This scene leads to an extreme climax, all very intense and pretty cool. I could have given this five stars if they would have cut out the attempt to add romance to the story. Stick to science and adventure guys, like Crichton and Rollins.

As far as the narration goes, I have never liked Scott Brick's narration, he always sounds the same no matter what he reads. He makes every sentence sound dramatic and sarcastic. Having said that I felt his tone actually worked well for this book. All the characters in this book are sarcastic. He does not do humor very well.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

So what?

I have a serious weakness when it comes to Audible book sales. I tend to browse and, often, buy. Sometimes I find a gem this way, but often the result is a book that falls into what I consider to be the "Who cares?" category. This book is one of those.

It is well written, and Scott Brick, as normal, does an excellent job. But the plot seems very, very thin. Yes, there is a meteorite. Yes, people want it. Yes, there is an individual who cares about nothing but getting the meteor and has too much power for this to end well (I do not believe I am giving anything away to say that). And, yes, this is the story about how they go about trying to get it. But nowhere in the story did I feel that this was an important thing to be doing or that the subsequent loss of life was worth the result.

It was clear to me about 20% into the book how it would end and, about 50% into the story, why their pursuer was so dogged about this chase. For me it was an effort to finish the book and even the ending did very little to redeem the effort.

If I had it to do over again I would have skipped this sale item.

24 of 28 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Snoodely
  • Santa Barbara, CA United States
  • 10-07-10


"The Ice Limit" pretty much comes up to the usual high Preston/Child standard. As always, these consummate authors have fetched afar for their plot concept -- a humongous meteor from outside our solar system, composed of an unknown element harder than diamond, lodged at the frigid southern tip of South America for millions of years -- but they have based their improbable scenario on solid science. I only deducted one star from my rating of this audiobook, because of the narrator. Despite Scott Brick's good reputation and popularity, I find his his nasal voice irritating, and I wish the audiobook publishers wouldn't use him so much for their narrations. A different actor with a better voice -- George Guidall, for instance -- would have improved this audiobook immeasurably. Otherwise, I recommend this audiobook to all thriller-lovers.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

A very fun read

I really enjoyed this book up to the end, although I was a bit frustrated by the ending. I had to knock off a star from my rating because the authors went way beyond their expertise when it came to superconductivity and electrophysics; there were a few really big groaners in this area speaking as an electrical engineer. The story and narration were so good, any small plot holes were entirely forgivable and I ended up staying up way into the night listening. Well worth a listen!

17 of 20 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Katja
  • Tampa, FL, United States
  • 08-16-10

A great thrill ride!!

I read this book a few years ago and loved it. To find it finally on audio, well I just had to listen. It was as good the second time as it was the first! Preston and Child are good separately but are fantastic together. I'm going to have to listen to all of the books I read years ago just to get those thrill rides.
The only thing is I wish the narrator would add a little more excitement to his voice. He comes off as monotone. But the story is excellent!

20 of 24 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Fiercely engrossing, unputdownable

This is without question the most exciting audiobook I have ever heard. The research is meticulous, as in all great historical fictions. The idea of trying to move an interstellar meteorite halfway around the world in a disguised oil tanker is romantic, outrageously ambitious, and captivating throughout. Scott Brick has become almost as good as Frank Muller was, which is the highest praise I can give. The plot never lets up, with twists and turns that literally will keep you up a night. Human, believable characters (with perhaps one exception) all involved in a mission which could revolutionize the scientific world, or kill them all: this is reading and writing at its very best.

23 of 28 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Couldn't make myself finish it...

The plot on the description sounds pretty exciting...but I found that it was taking way to long to get to anything in the description! I want to get to know some interesting characters pretty quickly and get to the dang alien substance or whatever! I don't care about political and military threats in a book that's supposed to be about a dangerous, life threatening unknown substance! Seriously, i hate to not finish a book when i use a credit for it, but I found myself skipping hours ahead just to hear something about the dang rock! Do NOT get this book. It might be interesting to someone with nautical knowledge, but didn't work for me.

35 of 44 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

This rock didn't rock me

I didn't find the rock and the quest for it nearly as exciting as the characters did. I got through the book, but I wouldn't say it was fabulous. Scott Brick is a good reader during exciting, tense scenes. But his directors should encourage him to lighten up when introducing characters, getting through small talk, etc.

19 of 24 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs Linda Irvine
  • 02-07-18

Disappointing read from Preston and Child

Having read a number of P and C books this was a hard slog of a listen. Had I been reading this from a book I would have given up somewhere around the middle. Tedious and slow with superficial character development and a pretty weak story line.

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  • Flo
  • 01-19-18


What did you like most about The Ice Limit?

Original story line, engaging and not afraid to take a few twists and turns.

What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

I loved this performance I felt Soot made the characters come alive.