Sunday, October 22, 2006



Aaron Elkins

Date: 1989   —   used only   —   Book

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Fiction, Mystery

Those who dare disturb the ancient Mayan pyramids will suffer the bite of the poisonous kinkajou, bright lights and the scourging of the soul, fires in the innards, and death by sharp spikes through the brain. Of course, archæologists don't believe that (well, most of them don't), and so when a really bad version of the curse starts coming true at a reopened dig, Gideon Oliver and the rest suspect a human agency.

The obvious and logical suspect is the archæologist who, years before, ran off with the priceless codex found in the pyramid and caved it in. But the site has been abandoned for years, so why is there fresh digging going on in secret? What can the person hope to find that they could not have found without detection in the intervening years? And why is Gideon, in particular, being targeted for death?

This is a fun little romp that underscores the importance of proper archæology; much of the pyramid was irreparably damaged by the inept handling of the codex-stealing group leader. Archæology is the study of everything, not merely the objects of greatest value.

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