I can't help but compare Davis Bunn's "Rare Earth" to its precursor- "Lion of Babylon." If you read the first book and enjoyed it, then you will like "Rare Earth" - and you'll probably like it more. If you're familiar with Bunn's work, then you know he is skilled at depicting believable settings; the reader can almost feel the oppressive heat and the bleak hopelessness of a Kenyan refugee camp or city slum, where most of the story plays out. The plotline is engaging and keeps you reading; covert operative Marc Royce sets out to find a missing aid worker and in doing so uncovers a hidden international scheme to monopolize rare minerals used in advanced technologies. He also falls in love along the way, though the romance is pretty weakly developed. As with "Lion of Babylon", this book is not so suspenseful that it will keep you up at night, but it is action-packed, contemporary, and entertaining. Also like "Lion of Babylon", "Rare Earth" is weak on character development. Though you would not need to read the first book to understand and enjoy this one, you will be left with no mental picture of Marc Royce, the main character (you wouldn't have found it in the first book either), and you will not get any introduction or background about him_you'll simply have to accept that he's amazingly capable, indeed, divinely anointed, in all he does. I find myself frequently picturing a Christian version of some action movie spy hero, say Jason Bourne or Jack Bauer, for lack of any character description or introduction. I think this is why, in general, I don't feel any real connection with Bunn's characters- you don't really get to know them, you simply read about them. The true book lover will know what I mean by that!
Ultimately, "Rare Earth" is a better book than "Lion of Babylon". The conflict is better, and not so effortlessly resolved, making it more believable and slightly more suspenseful. Without a doubt there will be a third book and I'll read it when it comes, if only because they seem to keep getting better every time. Despite some weaknesses, Bunn is a strong writer when it comes to plot and setting, and for that reason I really enjoy his writing.
I received a complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.
Rare Earth, by Davis Bunn starts out exciting and never stops! The book continues the story of Marc Royce from Lion of Babylon, book one in the series. It is a fast paced thriller about Kenya, Africa with just enough romance to make our hero human. This novel relates to the subject of corrupt, greedy men in power and how they treat ordinary men, women and children, this case being tribal inhabitants of Africa, all for the sake of money and ultimately more power. Marc's compassion and concern for what he knows to be right leads him on a journey to Israel and back to Africa to help restore lands and their ultimate value to the rightful owners. This is significant in that it exposes the corruption which is taking place in our world today. Thanks to Davis Bunn for this pertinent topic!
I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers with the stipulation I would write a review.
Davis Bunn in his new book, "Rare Earth" Book Two in the Marc Royce series published by Bethany House takes us to Kenya.
From the back cover: Marc Royce stares out of the helicopter, a sense of foreboding rising with the volcanic cloud. Below, the Rift Valley slashes across Africa like a scar. Decades of conflicts, droughts, and natural disasters have left their mark.
Dispatched to audit a relief organization, Royce is thrust into the squalor and chaos of Kenyan refugee camps. But his true mission focuses on the area's reserves of once-obscure minerals now indispensable to high-tech industries. These strategic elements-called rare earth-have inflamed tensions on the world's stage and stoked tribal rivalries. As Royce prepares to report back to Washington, he seizes on a bold and risky venture for restoring justice to this troubled land.
But this time, Royce may have gone too far.
Marc Royce is back! If you enjoyed the first book in this series, "Lion of Babylon", then you are going to enjoy this one also. Here is a question: does God like certain parts of Earth more than He likes other parts? The answer is no. Humans divided up the planet with their lines on map making countries, cities and towns. God looks at the Earth and says all the Earth is mine. So to God Kenya is no less valuable than, let's say, Switzerland. Get ready for an exciting suspense ride as "Rare Earth" is a thriller, which simply means that everyone's lives are in danger from practically page one. The title comes from indispensable minerals to high-tech industries. Marc Royce is sent to the Kenya to investigate conflicting reports about missing people and whole villages. Along the way he sees the truth about the Kenyan refuge camps. During the course of this investigation Marc will encounter villains, treachery and life-threatening situations that will keep you flipping the pages as fast as you can read. The theme of "Rare Earth" is all human life has value. The lead characters are terrific and we root for them as we live through their various heart-throbbing encounters. Davis Bunn does a truly remarkable job in this book while exciting us with this story that everyone will enjoy.
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bethany House. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
This recent release from author, Davis Bunn proved to be an action-packed novel. Bunn begins the story by giving the reader very little information about the past of the main character, Marc Royce. Little by little his story begins to unfold, until you see his strong and heroic character shining through. The characters in this book are very well developed. My favorite character was another agent named Deborah. I thoroughly enjoyed the storyline and the African setting. I highly recommend this book for anyone looking for a book full of action and adventure, as well as, a little romance and strong Christian characters.
Rare Earth by Davis Bunn (and published by Bethany House) is the second in the Marc Royce Series. The first in the series is entitled Lion of Babylon. You need to know that this book could easily be a stand-alone novel. Even though you're introduced to the courageous life of Marc Royce in the first book, you'll know all about him through this second book and won't feel like you missed a thing.
Marc is sent on a dangerous mission to Kenyan refugee camps. The people who hire him don't expect him to live. Most outsiders are never accepted. But Marc proves himself over and over as he seeks to help these refugees who have lost everything. Soon, he gains the respect of the tribal leaders...leaders from several tribes who have feuded in the past. But they've come together with one objective--to save their villages.
Someone has a hidden agenda to take the rare earth (dirt with many unusual minerals used in the high-tech industry) from these villages for their own use and to line their own pockets. It's Marc's job to discover who is doing this.
Davis Bunn writes in a fast-paced and tension-filled style. I finished this book in one day--it's that good. Plus I love the spiritual depth he has which he includes in his books. I would highly recommend this book and this series. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.
Thank you to Bethany House Publishers for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255