Summary and book reviews of The Hammer of Eden by Ken Follett

The Hammer of Eden

by Ken Follett

The Hammer of Eden
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  • First Published:
    Sep 1998, 404 pages
    Paperback:
    Nov 1999, 436 pages

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Book Summary

Ken Follett hits the top of his form with The Hammer of Eden, a state-of-the-art suspense thriller to rival his best.

When controversial radio talk host John Truth broadcasts a terrorist threat of a man-made earthquake, few people take it seriously. Crackerjack young FBI agent Judy Maddox is assigned to track down the elusive, sinister group called the Hammer of Eden.

Judy's boss, who has a grudge against her, thinks he has given her a waste-of-time assignment. But Judy's research leads her to maverick seismologist Michael Quercus, who gives her the shocking news that it might just be possible for an earthquake to be deliberately triggered. And when a tremor in a remote California desert shows evidence of being machine-generated, Judy knows the threat is terrifyingly real.

Suddenly in charge of a life-or-death investigation, Judy must pinpoint the terrorists' next target, with the help of the erratic but attractive Michael. Their compelling romantic drama is played out as they race to beat the terrorist deadline and prevent an unthinkable disaster.

Unknown to them, Michael's estranged wife, gorgeous but angry, has fallen under the spell of a clever, sexy cult leader called Priest--and they have stolen from Michael's computer the key data that enables the Hammer of Eden to carry out their cataclysmic threat. Worse still, Michael's son is with his wife--and under the control of Priest. All of them are in mortal jeopardy as Judy and Michael fight to save San Francisco from being brought down in ruins.

Excerpt
The Hammer of Eden

A man called Priest pulled his cowboy hat down at the front and peered across the flat, dusty desert of South Texas.

The low dull green bushes of thorny mesquite and sagebrush stretched in every direction as far as he could see. In front of him, a ridged and rutted track ten feet wide had been driven through the vegetation. These tracks were called senderos by the Hispanic bulldozer drivers who cut them in brutally straight lines. On one side, at precise fifty-yard intervals, bright pink plastic marker flags fluttered on short wire poles. A truck moved slowly along the sendero.

Priest had to steal the truck.

He had stolen his first vehicle at the age of eleven, a brand-new snow white 1961 Lincoln Continental parked, with the keys in the dash, outside the Roxy Theatre on South Broadway in Los Angeles. Priest, who was called Ricky in those days, could hardly see over the steering wheel. He had been so scared he almost wet himself, but he drove ...

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Reviews

Media Reviews

Publishers Weekly

All else in the novel, including the perfunctory prose, serve only to push the story quickly through its paces, but Follett's troupe of lost souls makes it dance to a memorable, mournful tune.

Booklist

... even the predictable romance doesn't deter the two from taking care of the bad guys and saving California from the Big One. Fortunately, a ho-hum premise turns into a riveting thriller in Follett's skillful hands. Taut plotting, tense action, skillful writing, and myriad unexpected twists make this one utterly unputdownable. Destined for bestsellerdom.

Daily Telegraph (UK)

Crackles with suspense.

Daily Mail

This book is so exciting I found myself setting my alarm clock for four in the morning to finish it!

Reader Reviews

Petey Pablo

This was a very good book that kept you guessing who the real good guy's were throughout the whole novel. Great Ken Follett fiction

deep toot

the book was superb; it leaves me wanting more. It is a story of suspense and intrigue


Eppy

One of the best 50 books of all time. Outstanding characterization, plot flow, feel.

Terrell Sutton

I could not put this book down. While walking on campus I found myself bumping into people because i wouldn't look up. Adventure plus a little "romance" is always good. Ken Follett is a truly amazing author, so if you like this one I ...   Read More

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