The Doomsday Key

By James Rollins

The Short Take:

As you read along, it’s a solid, fast-paced thriller. Just what you expect from Rollins. Then you read about what’s true in the back. And suddenly you are scared out of your wits.


This is not the type of book I usually write about, even though I do read. I prefer to support books that might not be very well known, minor as my support may be.

James Rollins is beyond a best seller — he is a brand. His black-ops team of scientist/para-military types in Sigma Force fight evil as well as Washington. What’s not to love?

But here’s the thing: Though marketed as a thriller, Rollin’s books are actually more terrifying that anything Stephen King or Dean Koontz ever dreamed up. Why? Because the scariest things in his books are true. And these things are so scary they can keep you up at night, or send you into a life of complete dissolution since you know there’s no hope.

In his book The Last Oracle, Rollins revealed a lake so poisoned by radioactivity just to stand by it could kill you. And it’s located right over earthquake fault lines that could send this deadly mess right into the Arctic Ocean, poisoning Europe.

In this one, he makes a strong case for the inevitability for world-wide famine, food riots, and the complete destruction of civilization with some 90% of the population dying.

That’s certainly the scariest thing I’ve ever heard.

Koontz and King give you the shivers big time, but afterwards you turn up the lights and relax knowing their work is pure fiction. Rollins stays with you. Eek.

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