Sunday, September 20, 2009
Reviewing: "Treasure of Eden" by S. L. Linnea
In late March, 1954, two cousins found a cave in the Judean desert, west of the Dead Sea. Bedouins, the teen boys, believed the cave to be full of treasure. The boys knew of a promise made by the sheikh that whoever brought back home treasures of antiquity would get to go with the sheikh on the next Hajj. The cave wasn’t full of treasure, but it did contain one small box that is priceless.
The box and the situation of the discovery ultimately created a scenario where one cousin lived and one died. That box has given the survivor both power and heartbreak. Held by the cousin for years as he ascended to power, he finally sees no other option but to sell it in late January, 2007. Of course, in the age of the Internet, the only way to sell it is obviously to put it up for auction on eBay where it quickly comes to the attention of various parties around the globe. However, the cousin soon has a big problem as the item is no longer in his possession and losing it could have dire consequences.
Among others, that box is vital to the operatives of Eden which includes United States Military Chaplin Jamie Richards. Back in Iraq and still working as an Army Chaplin, she has powerful friends and allies both in the real world and the hidden “Eden” world. She also has powerful enemies that also want the ancient box. An ancient box that may hold the actual written details of what Jesus said would be best in terms of society, markets and other issues.
This final installment of the trilogy brings the series to a close and satisfactorily wraps up a number of over arching story threads. Once again there are an excessive number of characters as the authors emulate epic thriller novels while not grasping the concept that secondary characters must have an impact on the overall storyline to have a purpose other that padding word counts. There remains the annoying tendency to bury the small parts of good stuff in a noise of unnecessary fluff. The authors, Sharon Linnea and B. K. Sterer, who together are writing under the name of S. L. Linnea, still refuse to understand that that there is a fine line between providing a rich read and preaching to the readers whether it is religious theory, economic theory, or some other social point. When the tale stops dead for page after page to make some sort of societal point, the authors lose their audience. A book purported to be a thriller should never bore the reader and this one frequently does, despite the raves by some and the promotional copy hype.
Still, for those fans of the series and there are many, this final installment will give them exactly what they want as the ongoing characters have not evolved at all over the several years of the series. Book three follows the same tried and true formula of the invincible Jamie Richards, compassionate, smart and so incredibly talented as she battles against forces of evil and misguided zealots to save the planet from the latest problem. The perfect comic book heroine, she can survive anything and find love along the way.
For those new to the series, this might be the best book to read as it rehashes concisely the first two books and tells a story slightly better than them.
Seasoned readers may wish to take a pass on this book as many of us have seen the same ideas done by many others in so many better ways.
Treasure of Eden
S. L. Linnea
St. Martin’s Paperbacks
Review copy provided by publicist P. J. Nunn of BreakThrough Promotions in exchange for my objective review.
Kevin R. Tipple (c) 2009