Authors We Love, Part XVIII: Cassidy Kingston On James Rollins

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When asked to write this post I had to stop and think about who I wanted to write about. I have MANY authors I love. Stephen King was the first author I fell in love with and like all first loves he will always hold a special place in my heart. But, everyone knows Stephen King, even non-readers. So I started running names of other authors I love by my non-reading friends…yes I have these friends, and I don’t hold it against them…too much. The one that NONE of them knew was James Rollins. It shocked me to say the least. He is awesome! So I decided I would share with you a few reasons I love him.

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The First book of his I read was Deep Fathom. This is a stand alone novel and I fell in love with him right away! Here is a brief summary of Deep Fathom.

Ex-Navy SEAL Jack Kirkland surfaces from an aborted underwater salvage mission to find the Earth burning. Solar flares have triggered a series of gargantuan natural disasters. Earthquakes and hellfire rock the globe. Air Force One has vanished from the skies with America’s president on board. Now, with the U.S. being on the narrow brink of a nuclear apocalypse, Kirkland must pilot his oceangoing exploration ship, Deep Fathom, on a desperate mission miles below the ocean’s surface. There devastating secrets await him—and a power an ancient civilization could not contain has been cast out into modern day. And it will forever alter a world that’s already racing toward its own destruction.

I could not put this book down until I was finished! Then I ran off to the library to check out every book he had ever written…and I was not disappointed by any of them! His writing flows very naturally and he draws you in with his skillful ability to write characters that even though you have nothing in common with, you can relate to.

He has seven stand alone novels Subterranean, Excavation, Deep Fathom, Amazonia, Ice Hunt, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and Altar of Eden. Each one even better than the last.

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His Sigma Force Series is by far the best series I have ever read. Having degrees in Biology I love reading novels that include sciences as well as adventure. The best thing about Rollins is that he writes in a way that even someone who is not knowledgeable or super into science can still understand and enjoy his novels.

Here is a brief description from Wikipedia on his Sigma Force series.

The SIGMA Force is a fictional division of the U.S. DARPA program. James Rollins has developed unique characters operating in an official top-secret capacity. The chief operatives in SIGMA combine military skills with specialist scientific knowledge. The Force’s purpose is to investigate and to secure sensitive information that could be a threat to the United States. It is a combination of Counter-terrorism, research, and covert operations. Following the first book, Sandstorm, the SIGMA Force headquarters moves into the sub-basement of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.. Rollins mixes science, religion, and theory throughout the Sigma Force series, creating stories involving a covert, well-equipped group of United States “black ops” scientist/soldiers. These novels are intended to be read in chronological order.

Currently the series consist of 8 Novels: Sandstorm, Map of Bones, Black Order, The Judas Strain, The Last Oracle, The Doomsday Key, The Devil Colony, and Bloodline (coming in 2012)

My absolute favorite is The Judas Strain. The mixture of suspense and science in this novel had me from the very start. I have read it multiple times and love it even more each time.

ju·das strain, n. A scientific term for an organism that drives an entire species to extinction

New York Times bestselling author James Rollins returns with a terrifying story of an ancient menace reborn to plague the modern world . . . and of an impossible hope that lies hidden in the most shocking place imaginable: within the language of angels.

From the depths of the Indian Ocean, a horrific plague has arisen to devastate humankind–a disease that’s unknown, unstoppable . . . and deadly. But it is merely a harbinger of the doom that is to follow. Aboard a cruise liner transformed into a makeshift hospital, Dr. Lisa Cummings and Monk Kokkalis–operatives of SIGMA Force–search for answers to the bizarre affliction. But there are others with far less altruistic intentions. In a savage and sudden coup, terrorists hijack the vessel, turning a mercy ship into a floating bio-weapons lab.

A world away, SIGMA’s Commander Gray Pierce thwarts the murderous schemes of a beautiful would-be killer who holds the first clue to the discovery of a possible cure. Pierce joins forces with the woman who wanted him dead, and together they embark upon an astonishing quest following the trail of the most fabled explorer in history: Marco Polo. But time is an enemy as a worldwide pandemic grows rapidly out of control. As a relentless madman dogs their every step, Gray and his unlikely ally are being pulled into an astonishing mystery buried deep in antiquity and in humanity’s genetic code. And as the seconds tick closer to doomsday, Gray Pierce will realize he can truly trust no one, for any one of them could be . . . a Judas.

See, doesn’t that sound amazing??? Well I tell you…it is!

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So that doesn’t sound good to you? Well how does Indiana Jones sound? In 2008 Rollins was chosen to write the novel Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull…Yes…THAT Indiana Jones. And I have to say, he did a great job of it. When asked how he got chosen to write the 4th Indiana novel this is what he said.

“Well, over the years, my books have been critically compared to Indiana Jones – I think mostly due to the historical or archaeological nature of the novels. In fact, one reviewer of my book, Map of Bones, described it as a cross between Indiana Jones and The Da Vinci Code. And such reviews did eventually draw the attention of Random House, which obtained the adaptation rights to the film. After that, my name got submitted, and I got the thumb’s up.”

He also has written several books under the pen name James Clemons, I have not read these yet. And his Jake Ransom series is aimed at children.

And who can’t love a guy who when asked how he feels about snakes answered,

“With a little ketchup, they aren’t bad.”

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Cassidy is a married mother of three who writes paranormal erotic romances in her spare time. She has a Degree in Animal and Ecological Biology as well as one in Developmental Psychology. She currently has two short stories out with Torrid Book and has three more coming out with them later this year and early next year. You can find her short stories at www.torridbooks.com, Amazon, B&N, and All Romance ebooks.

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