I have to admit that I was a bit reluctant to read Pandora's Temple by Jon Land. The title interested me, but not to the point where I was actually excited to pick it up and read it. That all changed, however, when I read that dark matter would play a big part in the storyline. I have always been interested in the subject of dark matter and was intrigued by how it would be incorporated into this book. Therefore, I immediately decided right then and there that I would try it and see what happens.
Pandora's Temple is a continuation of a series of books by the author Jon Land with Blaine McCracken as the main character. The novel starts two years into McCracken's retirement (according to McCracken, What retirement?), when he is called to save four college boys who are being held as hostages. The culprit? A man by the name of Arturo Nieves Morales, head of the Juarez drug cartel. McCracken poses as a man looking to provide Morales with new routes to bring his supplies into the U.S. Of course, every person going undercover has to have some plan with which to foil his foes. McCracken, indeed, has a plan. So, after kicking some butt and showing Morales and his men who's boss, McCracken goes on his merry little way. Well....as merry as a rogue agent can be....
Cue Paul Basmajian, a friend of McCracken's, aboard the Deepwater Venture. An oil rig on the verge of making history, drilling to a level no oil rig has drilled before: past 32,000 feet. Mr. Basmajian senses that all is not as it seems concerning the rig. The location they are drilling, according to a cartoon rendering, shows no indications of the sandy sediment layers that signify oil beneath. He begins to wonder if there is something more to it. Something more to where they are drilling. And he is right.
A strange thing happens once the drill reaches past the target depth. A thing so bizarre that it causes the entire crew of the Deepwater Venture to just simply vanish.
The disappearance of the crew, along with the question of what could have caused it, brings McCracken back into the picture. He along with his buddies, Johnny Wareagle and Captain Seven, are called in to bring the situation to light. What they do not know is that what happened to the Deepwater Venture and its crew, is just a small factor in a much bigger plot. A plot that might, ultimately, mean the destruction of the world itself.
All in all, I have to say that this Pandora's Temple a very well-written novel. The action scenes were very vivid, and the more technical aspects seemed to be very well researched. Having never read a Jon Land novel in all my life, I was very pleasantly surprised to enjoy what I read. I look forward to reading many more books by Mr. Land, and hope to find each one as interesting and action-filled as this.
Recommended for people who love action, adventure, and a bit of science.