Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

I talked about the Pendergast series last month, but these two authors have many other excellent novels.

Before Pendergast overtook their careers, they co-wrote some incredibly engrossing thrillers: RIPTIDE, THUNDERHEAD, and THE ICE LIMIT are amazing page turners I have read many, many times. Riptide is a pastisch of the Oak Island Money Pit and every single chapter pulls you in. Thunderhead is about discovering a lost Anasazi cave city out West and the mysterious killers who try to keep it secret. Ice Limit is about an expedition to retrieve a strange meteor from the Arctic Ocean.

There are two co-written series spinning off from the Pendergast series starring Gideon Crew and Nora Kelly respectively. While not as good as the main series, they are still definitely worth a read. I particularly loved THE LOST ISLAND for going full on genre for the first time in years. But the best of all is BEYOND THE ICE LIMIT, a sequel to a novel from 16 (!) years earlier I’d been dying to read.

Of Douglas Preston’s solo works, my favorites would be THE CODEX, IMPACT, and particularly BLASPHEMY. The later is about a particle accelerator test that enables the scientists to speak to an entity claiming to be God. Hi-jinks ensue. The Codex is an old fashioned adventure quest to find a lost treasure buried in South America. Impact is about mysterious meteors hitting the Earth that could wipe out humanity.

Of Lincoln Child’s solo works, my favorites are UTOPIA, DEEP STORM, and the THIRD GATE. Utopia is ‘Die Hard at Disney World’ so that hits all sorts of buttons for me. Deep Storm is an engrossing deep sea thriller about the discovery of an alien artifact at the bottom of the ocean. And Third Gate is a great thriller about discovering an ancient Egyptian tomb that is literally haunted.

My favorite stories by these two authors are invariably the ones that lean into their sci-fi/fantasy sensibilities. When it’s just a mundane killer story, I tend to lose interest, but even those are always expertly written.

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