THE MAYAN GLYPH
Amber Quill Press, June 2003
Reviewed by Joy Calderwood
Archaeologists opening a kingís grave in the Yucatan unwittingly resurrect
a deadly virus, which has been dormant for 1200 years. The archaeology
team, the occupants of the plane on which they returned to Austin, Texas,
and then Austin itself: the numbers of the dead are growing fast. This
could easily be the end of the human race.
THE MAYAN GLYPH works on two levels. It is a lively, exciting adventure
story with a nice romance between Robert and Theresa; and it is a
knowledgeable, inventive scientific puzzler. It is arranged so readers can
skip over the technical details if they like without hurting the story, or
they can enjoy the reasoning and mental leaps that lead to a solution.
When I visited the authorís website I was not at all surprised to learn
that he is an inventor. Also, the planning that goes into the handling of
the outbreak seems completely authentic, as if the author used ideas he
got from participating in a think tank on the subject.
I started THE MAYAN GLYPH with a set conviction: I hate thrillers about epidemics. A tongue-in-cheek comment on the first page made me realize I had better think again. There isnít a lot of room for humor in a book on this subject, but when there is, Baxter uses it. To my great relief THE MAYAN GLYPH does not revel in panic and anguish, it does not focus on the degradation of humanity expecting the end of days, and it is not out to terrorize readers for the fun of it. That kind of writing is for people who have not experienced real disaster. When the chips are down, individuals pull together to beat the threat, and recognizing this is what gives THE MAYAN GLYPH its quality.
June 2003 Review Originally Published on WOR
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