Thursday, September 23, 2010

How far would you go to uncover the biggest discovery in the history of mankind?

The Ice Limit
Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child

How far would you go to uncover the scientific discovery of the century? Perhaps the biggest discovery in the history of mankind?

Sam McFarlane is a renegade scientist - he finds and studies meteorites but refuses to conform to the typical research realm of academia and instead travels the world looking for evidence to support his theory of an interstellar meteorite. He has recently lost face with the scientific community, lost his research partner and best friend, and his marriage ended in divorce. When Palmer Lloyd, the seventh richest man in the world, asks McFarlane to be the chief scientist on an expedition to retrieve a previously undiscovered meteorite in extreme South America - the largest meteorite ever discovered - McFarlane reluctantly agrees. Under the cloak of secrecy, a team of engineering and scientific experts set off on the most dangerous trip of their lives; a trip that leads them to The Ice Limit.

The Ice Limit was action-packed and full of great nerdy science facts, intermixed science fact and fiction, brought in a bit of engineering foresight....and then totally lost me. I'm still not completely sure what happened at the end, am pretty sure that I didn't understand the big reveal about Puppup, and just am not engineering-inclined enough to fully appreciate some of the details. In addition, I have now read several Preston/Child books and while I always enjoy them for what they are - thrillers with a touch of science - I find that they all have a kind of odd flow that doesn't sit well with me.

Overall, a good story with a slightly disappointing ending but the aspects of science kept my attention when it otherwise might have faltered.

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