Book review: The Inca Curse by Christopher Ride
And there is plenty of that in author Christopher Ride's latest thriller, the third in his successful Overseer series.
Having lived in Peru, Ride moves confidently through its landscape, history and culture - providing a mountainous backdrop for a supernatural thriller with time travel, demonic power, crucifixion, omens and Amazons.
The Golden Cube of the Sun God has been stolen from its hiding place in Machu Picchu and its embedded evil has taken over the most powerful religious figure in South America. It is unleashing horror and interferes with Overseer's seemingly simple task of aiding the discovery of the lost Inca city.
Genetically modified as a kind of super human, overseer Wilson Dowling carries our hopes for vanquished evil on his remarkable shoulders - and even has time for momentarily forced procreation with the protective Amazons.
The story holds together well and probably won't disappoint - I would give it about a 6/10 on the "I can't put this down" scale, and that is a point or two ahead of a couple other mass-market thrillers I've reviewed recently, Zoo by James Patterson and The Vanishing Point.
Ride says of his well-researched narratives that "people that read my books, hopefully what happens is you learn a lot about the history from a moral prospective..."
And perhaps that will carry over to another writing ambition he carries involving an Overseer of a different kind. Ride says he wants to write a (book) manuscript for each of the 39 books of the Old Testament. Mmm, wonder if he's read Obadiah?
While this might sound a task of Biblical proportion, the mechanised discipline of Christopher Ride might just accomplish it, God willing. His practise, apparently, is to come home from running his highly successful IT business, Interactive, had a nap and then write into the wee small hours until he has added 1000 words.
The goal being to write a first draft in the first half of the year and re-work it in the second so as to accomplish a book a year... Clearly the man has no immediate family.
And did I mention he got his break in publishing by self-publishing his first novel The Schumann Frequency and promoting it by visiting every bookseller in Australia and having 12,000 copies available for sale. Again, a determined effort.
The Inca Curse, Bantam, Random House, Paperback, 416 pages. Buy it from this Australian bookseller: