Thaddeus Lumpen’s archaeology career is near collapse, thanks to the machinations of rivals who would kill to claim a discovery for themselves. In desperation he turns to Freddy Fitzgerald, a rebellious writer who still maintains connections from his days as a street hooligan. For Lumpen to get ahead of his even less scrupulous competitors he must steal an ancient map and forge a path to an island where a lost civilization waits to be found. For Freddy, it’s a chance to sell the story of a lifetime.
But nothing is as simple as it appears from halfway across the world. Old acquaintances become enemies, professional rivalries turn violent, and a notorious gang lord wants his map back. The island itself holds dangers that Freddy and Lumpen couldn’t have prepared to face—and horrifying secrets that might be better left buried. Beset by wild beasts, cutthroat competitors, and dangers darker still, the two men fight not for glory, but their own survival… before the island pushes them to the brink of insanity.
I really enjoyed Barrus’ “Discovering Aberration”.
On the upside, it’s a polished adventure story along the lines of Robert Louis Stevenson or Edgar Rice Burroughs with a touch of steampunk that reminds me of Scott Westerfeld. The characters are solid and well-fleshed out. The story, for the most part, moves along at a fast and enjoyable pace.
One the downside, the pace of the book sputters from time to time.
Having said that, I really enjoyed “Discovering Aberration” and hope to read a sequel some day.
I’m giving this one 4 stars out of 5 and I recommend it. It’s a great bang for the buck.