Relic

This week’s fun read was Relic by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. I had initially watched the movie The Relic back when it was released in 1997. Yes, I know, I am dating myself a little here. I did enjoy the film and as I read the book, I realized that events were very similar. I will say that I think the book was by far better than the movie but that is due to all the detail the book was allowed to give that the film simply could not. So, to refresh my memory of how the movie was done, I dragged my son along to watch it again to me. He says it won’t scare him, but we will see.
There were so many moving parts to this story that you had to pay attention. I enjoy stories that are constructed this way. They keep you guessing so that you go along for the ride with the characters. Of course, I tried to figure out what is going on before the writers revealed it to us, we all do.
They built up the suspense in this novel. Almost every chapter left you hanging off the edge off the edge of a cliff. I felt like I wanted to rush through to the next chapter just to connect the dots from the previous section. Unfortunately, if you do this, you miss out on another vital clue. That was something else I liked about this book. They sprinkled the clues and wove them around the story.
The story had a lot of scientific detail that was vital to the story, and I think the authors did an excellent job of using it but not letting it slow down the story. So many times I have read books that are so heavy with the scientific data that I find myself skipping over it. For me, the scientific information was intriguing, and I wanted to know more about what the characters were discovering.
I enjoyed the different personalities of the characters involved. I think my favorite guys were Prendergast and Augusta. Pendergast was the embodiment of a southern gentleman. Even his name Aloysius X.L. Pendergast gave him that southern quality. Throughout the whole story not much seemed to ruffle his feathers. In stark contrast, you had D’Agosta who was as crash and rough around the edges. They played off each other rather well, and when others turned against them, they were able to come together to help each other.
Generally, for me, I like a strong female character from the beginning, but I found myself liking Margo. She started off as someone who I would view as quiet and reserved. As the story progressed, we were able to see that she was strong and brave. Her knowledge and ability think quickly on her feet was a great asset to the other characters involved. She was a neat character to follow because you were able to watch her grow.
Overall, I enjoyed the book. It kept me on the edge of my seat and wanting me to turn the pages even though I had seen the movie. In my opinion, the book was much better than the movie. If you want something that will keep you guessing and combines science, then this is the book for you.

5 thoughts on “Relic

  1. I also felt the need to move quickly through the book, trying to put everything together. I found myself unable to put it down for a lot of the time, even though it was one that I was originally reluctant to pick up. I also thought that the science wasn’t too overdone, I definitely have read books that made me yawn and skip quite a few pages in a row to get to the important bits, but I do think that this one had a good balance. I didn’t even know there was a movie. I’ll have to watch it!

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  2. As I read the story, I couldn’t help but think of how much work it would take to keep track of all the moving parts. I also enjoyed the characters in the story as well, and I was glad to see how Margo develops over the course of the story as well. I just wish we got more of the monster. I felt like, for all of the setup and backstory, we saw very little of in the end.

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  3. You’re not dating yourself to bad, or at least not to me, as I also remember the movie in passing. It was about the time when the guard went outside to smoke a joint that I began to recall flashes of a very similar movie. Of course then it was a guard smoking in the bathroom, but it was enough to get the brain rolling. As you said there were a lot of moving parts, and that was in part why this felt more like a thriller or a mystery to me. There were times where it felt like there was more focus on the mystery of the monster than the monster itself. Still, as you said, it was nicely paced and did keep me going back for more.

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  4. I saw the movie, too, but I don’t remember any of it! I agree that the authors did a great job of conveying scientific information in an accessible way. My eyes didn’t glaze over once as I read this.

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