Manda Scott, The Crystal Skull Reviews

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★★☆☆☆

“A fan's disappointment”

Written on: 04/07/2011 by LeenP1978 (4 reviews written)

I loved this writers Boudica books because there was something about her characters and the entire environment that gave the stories a warmth and made them seem real. 2012 Crystal Skull left me quite disappointed, there wasn't one character I particularly warmed to apart from Owen and I disliked the cool, emotionless Stella and even groaned a bit at the plot twist cliches towards the end. The setting of the story - the 2012 Mayan apocalypse - is quite exciting and the pot-holing descriptions had my heart thudding (claustrophobia!). I'm not saying don't read this, but you might like it more if you haven't read Boudica first and know what she's capable of.

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★★★★★

“The Crystal Skull ”

Written on: 17/02/2008 by Harriet Klausner (18637 reviews written)

The Crystal Skull
Manda Scott
Delacorte, Apr 2008, $25.00
ISBN: 9780385340106

Her new husband Cambridge Professor Kit O'Connor gives his wife expert speleologist Stella Cody the perfect marriage present. The professor provides her with the sixteenth century work of Cedric Owen who in his poetry says he hid an ancient powerful artifact in the Gaping Ghyll, England's deepest known pothole. The newlyweds spend their honeymoon digging in dirt inside the Yorkshire cave until Stella finds the incredible sapphire skull.

They soon realize others want the skull and will do anything including murder to obtain it; Kit gets hurt while they escape. Stella learns more about the skull yet understands less as conflicting information surfaces. It appears that it is one of thirteen that need to merge to avoid Armageddon as prophesized by the Mayans which will occur on 12/12/12; or perhaps it needs to be destroyed at the right time in the right place to avoid the 12/12/12 end of the world; then again maybe doing something with it leads to 12/12/12/12 Armageddon.

Based on a crystal skull in the British Museum, Manda Scott provides an action-packed fast-paced tale. The story line mostly focuses on the mdoern day countdown, but also has interesting interudes to the Elziabethian Era travels of Owens to Zama in the Mayan Empire. Readers will appreciate this end of the world thriller so Brownian yet so different as even seemingly loving Kit is under supsicon by the bewildered heroine who is unsure what she should do next as any error could mean Arageddon.

Harriet Klausner

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