The Hammer of Eden by Ken Follett

Why I read It: Ken Follet always entertains

Where I Got It: Library

Who I Recommend This To: Folks who like modern-day good-cop, bad-terrorist action flicks.

Narrator: Alexander Adams

Publisher: Books on Tape, Inc. (2000)

Length: 11 CDs

Ken Follett gave Judy Maddox, FBI Agent, the best lines in this novel. Half Vietnamese, half Irish, only child of a cop father and dead mother, she is one tough woman. In her 30s, having dedicated her life to the FBI and putting bad guys behind bars, she suddenly finds her life a mess. Her boss took ill, and now her newly-assigned supervisor wants her fired and he is doing everything he can to make her look incompetent. He assigns her a crap job of checking into the terrorist group The Hammer Of Eden who are threatening to create earthquakes if nuclear plant building in CA is not halted.

Priest and Star have put nearly 3 decades into their valley, which is leased from the government. They founded, molded, and nursed this commune into a thriving community, without electricity, or running water, or paying taxes, or violence. Now, a damn is to be built – one that will be used for power plants and will also flood their valley. A recent addition to their group, Melanie (mother of Dusty) is a seismologist. Together with Priest and Star, they hatch a plan to steal and use a seismic vibrator to set off earthquakes at locations of their choosing.

Not only did this book have a lot of action, there was also the romance side that was more witty than mushy (the way I like it). As expected with a Ken Follett book, the characters where mufti-dimensional. Priest was a joy to hate because I could understand where he was coming from without condoning his choices. Judy Maddox was awesome to watch walk into a room of men and take charge with hard work and logic. She also shoot with either hand, a skill I recommend gun-users obtaining.

Alexander Adams had the perfect voice for Priest. I can always tell when a narrator has hit it straight on; I can easily picture myself re-reading this novel in 5-10 years and hearing Adams’s rendition of Priest’s voice. He also did a fair job for Judy, with all her gutsiness.

What I Liked: Judy Maddox’s line to cheating ex-boyfriend when he proclaims he is ready to have kids (paraphrased, “What do you want me to do? Shout hooray and spread my legs?”); the whole concept of the seismic vibrator; sexy Star; the helicopter flights.

What I Disliked: Star is described with having a very sexy voice, and Adams just didn’t pull off a middle-aged super sexy woman (tho I expect this would be difficult for most men and some women); why hasn’t this been made into a movie yet?

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