Books & Reviews 📚

Book #19: River of Ruin

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Author: Jack DuBrul
Publisher: NAL (December 03rd, 2002)
Pages: 534
Series: Philip Mercer #5


In the heart of Panama, a volcanic lake feeds a serpentine river—its stone banks laid by the Inca, who took back the gold and jewels plundered from them by the conquistadors. Legend has it that the Twice-Stolen Treasure has been buried for centuries in the Panamanian jungle. Discovering it means surviving the unpredictable black waters of the River of Ruin….

It begins at a Paris auction house, with a favor granted by an old high school friend to geologist Philip Mercer: the opportunity to buy a rare diary written during the French attempt at digging the Panama Canal. But Mercer isn’t the only one who wants it. Three Chinese assassins have been dispatched to get it, forcing Mercer into a subterranean game of cat and mouse that takes him from the hellish maze of l’empire de la mort and through the sewers of Paris.

Mercer realizes he has uncovered an intricate Chinese plot to trigger a deadly shift in the world’s balance of power. At stake is control of the canal, recently handed over to the government of Panama by the United States. Only Philip Mercer—with help from beautiful U.S. Army officer Lauren Vanik, a cell of tough French Foreign Legion commandos, and a crusty eighty-year-old retired sea captain named Harry White—can stop them.



I honestly skimmed the majority of this book. At one point, too much history was mentioned on the Aztecs and it kind of turned me off. I felt as if a professor was lecturing me. Don’t get me wrong, I love history, but one has to know where to draw the line.

My favorite character ended up being Lieutenant Henri Foch and had it not been for him, I wouldn’t have bothered to see this book to the end.

This book reminded me of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne in the action-adventure sense, but that’s where the comparison stops. It was my first and last Mercer book. It was kind of boring and at times I thought I would have fallen asleep had I not skimmed through it. It started off good, but it did not contain a good enough story to go along with the action and I thought it was just too long.





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Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn


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