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Ken Follett hits the top of his form with "The Hammer of Eden," a state-of-the-art suspense thriller to rival his best. When controversial radio talk host John Truth broadcasts a terrorist threat of a man-made earthquake, few people take it seriously. Crackerjack young FBI agent Judy Maddox is assigned to track down the elusive, sinister group called the "Hammer of Eden Ken Follett hits the top of his form with "The Hammer of Eden," a state-of-the-art suspense thriller to rival his best. When controversial radio talk host John Truth broadcasts a terrorist threat of a man-made earthquake, few people take it seriously. Crackerjack young FBI agent Judy Maddox is assigned to track down the elusive, sinister group called the "Hammer of Eden."Judy's boss, who has a grudge against her, thinks he has given her a waste-of-time assignment. But Judy's research leads her to maverick seismologist Michael Quercus, who gives her the shocking news that it might just be possible for an earthquake to be deliberately triggered. And when a tremor in a remote California desert shows evidence of being machine-generated, Judy knows the threat is terrifyingly real.Suddenly in charge of a life-or-death investigation, Judy must pinpoint the terrorists' next target, with the help of the erratic but attractive Michael. Their compelling romantic drama is played out as they race to beat the terrorist deadline and prevent an unthinkable disaster.Unknown to them, Michael's estranged wife, gorgeous but angry, has fallen under the spell of a clever, sexy cult leader called Priest -- and they have stolen from Michael's computer the key data that enables the Hammer of Eden to carry out their cataclysmic threat. Worse still, Michael's son is with his wife -- and under the control of Priest. All of them are in mortal jeopardy as Judy and Michael fight to save San Francisco from being brought down in ruins.Ken Follett became a best-selling author in 1978 with the publication of "Eye of the Needle, " which won the Edgar award and became a major motion picture. He has sincewritten numerous other best-selling thrillers and historical novels, including "The Third Twin, " and "A Place Called Freedom."


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Ken Follett hits the top of his form with "The Hammer of Eden," a state-of-the-art suspense thriller to rival his best. When controversial radio talk host John Truth broadcasts a terrorist threat of a man-made earthquake, few people take it seriously. Crackerjack young FBI agent Judy Maddox is assigned to track down the elusive, sinister group called the "Hammer of Eden Ken Follett hits the top of his form with "The Hammer of Eden," a state-of-the-art suspense thriller to rival his best. When controversial radio talk host John Truth broadcasts a terrorist threat of a man-made earthquake, few people take it seriously. Crackerjack young FBI agent Judy Maddox is assigned to track down the elusive, sinister group called the "Hammer of Eden."Judy's boss, who has a grudge against her, thinks he has given her a waste-of-time assignment. But Judy's research leads her to maverick seismologist Michael Quercus, who gives her the shocking news that it might just be possible for an earthquake to be deliberately triggered. And when a tremor in a remote California desert shows evidence of being machine-generated, Judy knows the threat is terrifyingly real.Suddenly in charge of a life-or-death investigation, Judy must pinpoint the terrorists' next target, with the help of the erratic but attractive Michael. Their compelling romantic drama is played out as they race to beat the terrorist deadline and prevent an unthinkable disaster.Unknown to them, Michael's estranged wife, gorgeous but angry, has fallen under the spell of a clever, sexy cult leader called Priest -- and they have stolen from Michael's computer the key data that enables the Hammer of Eden to carry out their cataclysmic threat. Worse still, Michael's son is with his wife -- and under the control of Priest. All of them are in mortal jeopardy as Judy and Michael fight to save San Francisco from being brought down in ruins.Ken Follett became a best-selling author in 1978 with the publication of "Eye of the Needle, " which won the Edgar award and became a major motion picture. He has sincewritten numerous other best-selling thrillers and historical novels, including "The Third Twin, " and "A Place Called Freedom."

30 review for The Hammer of Eden

  1. 4 out of 5

    Maria Espadinha

    A Flexible Borderline Suppose you’re living in a farm that provides you all the nourishment you need and that you even produce your own brand of wine mainly for selling and using the profits to buy other useful things also relevant for your well being. This sort of balanced, peaceful life, flows gently, like a slow motion movie, until the day of the explosive warning ⚠️: Some guys decided to build a dam, and ... as a result... your farm and all its surroundings will be flooded. In practical terms t A Flexible Borderline Suppose you’re living in a farm that provides you all the nourishment you need and that you even produce your own brand of wine mainly for selling and using the profits to buy other useful things also relevant for your well being. This sort of balanced, peaceful life, flows gently, like a slow motion movie, until the day of the explosive warning ⚠️: Some guys decided to build a dam, and ... as a result... your farm and all its surroundings will be flooded. In practical terms that means you’ll have to leave your beloved Eden behind, unless of course, you’re in the mood for a dangerous fight , risky to the point of mortal victims!... Right now, I’m sensing this particular stage of my review, as the perfect timing to drop a quite simple and expectable question: What would you do in such desperate circunstancies? Would you stick to the Angels Club, and leave everything behind without a resentful word, or would you slip down (temporarily?!) to hell whilst rising the Hammer of Eden? Not easy, huh?!... The Hammer of Eden explores a similar situation, showing how flexible can be the borderline between Angels and Demons — one day Angels, next day Demons!... 😜

  2. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Ken Follett used to write good stuff: The Key to Rebecca, Triple, Pillars of the Earth. He has also written a lot of junk. This one definitely falls into the latter category. It revolves around an ecoterrorist group that discovers how to cause earthquakes and uses the threat to try to stop dams and nuclear generating plants. The head terrorist is a con artist and cult leader who became a millionaire operating liquor stores even though he is illiterate and can't even read numbers, then dropped ou Ken Follett used to write good stuff: The Key to Rebecca, Triple, Pillars of the Earth. He has also written a lot of junk. This one definitely falls into the latter category. It revolves around an ecoterrorist group that discovers how to cause earthquakes and uses the threat to try to stop dams and nuclear generating plants. The head terrorist is a con artist and cult leader who became a millionaire operating liquor stores even though he is illiterate and can't even read numbers, then dropped out and started a commune. Right. More equally believable stuff follows. I can't believe I read the whole thing.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Brent Soderstrum

    A few wackos living in a commune in northern California figure out how to cause earthquakes and then use that knowledge to threaten California with more earthqueakes if more power plants are built. I enjoy Ken Follet's stories. He does a good job of setting out the characters of his books and then putting them in situations that are exciting. As I was reading this book I was thinking yes it is enjoyable story but not too believeable. Then I picked up the newspaper and read how the Swiss had stopp A few wackos living in a commune in northern California figure out how to cause earthquakes and then use that knowledge to threaten California with more earthqueakes if more power plants are built. I enjoy Ken Follet's stories. He does a good job of setting out the characters of his books and then putting them in situations that are exciting. As I was reading this book I was thinking yes it is enjoyable story but not too believeable. Then I picked up the newspaper and read how the Swiss had stopped their thermal nuclear program because it was causing earthquakes. Maybe it will be a possiblity for terrorists to threaten earthquakes someday.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Caitlyn

    What I really enjoyed but somewhat hated about this book is that it made me want both Judy and Priest to win. I think Priest truely did have good intentions in the beginning but he went totally haywire, but I liked that character greatly and wanted him to win when I read from his pov, but when I read from Judy's pov I wanted her to win, lol. Anyway Ken Follet has become one of my favourite authors because of the feel he always makes me feel towards the characters of his stories. They always brin What I really enjoyed but somewhat hated about this book is that it made me want both Judy and Priest to win. I think Priest truely did have good intentions in the beginning but he went totally haywire, but I liked that character greatly and wanted him to win when I read from his pov, but when I read from Judy's pov I wanted her to win, lol. Anyway Ken Follet has become one of my favourite authors because of the feel he always makes me feel towards the characters of his stories. They always bring about some kind of strong emotion.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Christina (A Reader of Fictions)

    Listened to around thirty minutes If I try to finish this book, I may literally die of laughter. I'm in no way mature enough to listen to a book about a "seismic vibrator" -not what it sounds like- especially when coupled with the title THE HAMMER OF EDEN. I was snorting so hard it hurt.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Addy

    This is probably the first and I hope the last Ken Follett novel that I found absolutely amateurish. For someone who has mesmerised the world with master pieces like 'Pillars of the Earth' and 'The Century Trilogy', this is an extremely poor novel. Had he not been one of my favourite authors and this year's go-to author, I would have probably abandoned this book midway. So, what annoyed me the most? The extremely silly action scenes, not just once, but every time there was a confrontation betwee This is probably the first and I hope the last Ken Follett novel that I found absolutely amateurish. For someone who has mesmerised the world with master pieces like 'Pillars of the Earth' and 'The Century Trilogy', this is an extremely poor novel. Had he not been one of my favourite authors and this year's go-to author, I would have probably abandoned this book midway. So, what annoyed me the most? The extremely silly action scenes, not just once, but every time there was a confrontation between a junkie against the entire might of the FBI complemented with elements of SWAT and all the other shizz that is required to stop a man from causing an earthquake. The climax was hilarious with the bad guy surviving a couple of shots through his face from a distance of zero metres while the Special Agent who's fighting him survives despite banging her head on the road, tossed all over the place, and a Gun shot. The plot becomes irrelevant when such unrealistic descriptions just spoil the entire thing. Highly avoidable book, and it's a shock that Ken Follett published something like this. Maybe he was high on some hippie stuff (which he keeps mentioning in the story) when he wrote this. 2/5.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Joann

    I am a Follett fan, but this one seemed formulaic and just old enough that the technology didn't work well. It wasn't a total waste...I listened while driving, but nothing like some of my favorites. If you want to read Follett at his best, I would suggest: Lie Down With Lions; Pillars of the Earth; World Without End; Eye of the Needle; and Night Over Water.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Darren

    My first book by this author. I enjoyed reading it. It is a older book of his. It had a good story to it. I liked the variety of characters in it. I hope to read more books by this author.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ross-Barry Finlayson.

    Brilliant. Ken Follett is such a brilliant author.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Alexw

    Follet never disappoints and the bad guy got what he deserved in the end .

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sheila Myers

    Great character development and a plot with a fast pace. I like these types of thrillers in which the the cause and effect seem highly possible in a real life situation.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jerry B

    No one can say this novel is just like the author's medieval stories about cathedrals and such! “Hammer” is about a cult left over from the sixties that turns into terrorists (mostly their leader) when a government project threatens to flood the land where they’ve been peacefully settled for three decades, successfully making wine to generate what little monetary income they need. The threat is that the group will cause an earthquake – seemingly a far-fetched idea which the author makes so belie No one can say this novel is just like the author's medieval stories about cathedrals and such! “Hammer” is about a cult left over from the sixties that turns into terrorists (mostly their leader) when a government project threatens to flood the land where they’ve been peacefully settled for three decades, successfully making wine to generate what little monetary income they need. The threat is that the group will cause an earthquake – seemingly a far-fetched idea which the author makes so believable that the suspense builds throughout the entire book with little respite. The gist of it is that a massive truck used in oil field exploration – a seismic vibrator – could indeed incite earth tremors if applied near a fault line. When the government fails to pay any attention to the group’s threat, they make good on their claim and cause a quake too little to cause damage but too scary to be a coincidence. After that, it’s a race between a determined FBI agent, Judy Maddox, whose career has been thwarted at almost every turn by the “old boy club” surrounding her; and the villain of the cult, “Priest”, who is not above murder and mayhem to accomplish his goals. The detective work is outstanding, but on more than one occasion, we almost found ourselves rooting for the cult to survive – they were basically harmless, with an interesting set of mores, until the earthquake scheme threw everything into chaos. Follett shows off all his terrific writing skills herein; to us, it was a most entertaining, suspenseful thriller that kept us turning pages as rapidly as they would go!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Marialyce

    Oh Mr Follett, you have done so much better than this book. I have to think that everyone needs a loser now and again and unfortunately this book was a loser. It was written in a juvenile manner and the plot while it did have some "earth shattering" moments lacked any wow factor.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    I've never read a bad Ken Follett novel until now. A group of eco terrorists make demands and if not met cause earthquakes with a stolen seismic vibrator. I can't believe I made it through in its entirety! Just awful.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    It's a thrill a minute in this exciting suspenseful novel. The FBI is called in to stop a dangerous terrorist group from causing earthquakes in their attempt to blackmail the governor of California. It's quite a ride.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Athena

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. 2 stars. There were aspects of this book I did like, the pacing was one of them. I was disappointed with the characters. What a bunch of dirt bags! I didn't like Priest, or Star, or Melanie, and I got increasingly frustrated every time he escaped the FBI. Priest was so out of the loop in technology, yet he outsmarted the FBI three times?! Come one! And he had been shot twice in one of those instances? The biggest issue I had was the sex scene between Priest and Melanie, and then Star came in try 2 stars. There were aspects of this book I did like, the pacing was one of them. I was disappointed with the characters. What a bunch of dirt bags! I didn't like Priest, or Star, or Melanie, and I got increasingly frustrated every time he escaped the FBI. Priest was so out of the loop in technology, yet he outsmarted the FBI three times?! Come one! And he had been shot twice in one of those instances? The biggest issue I had was the sex scene between Priest and Melanie, and then Star came in trying for a threesome. Melanie was not having it, and when Star touched her Melanie said no three times and was forced to then slap Star's hand away. Star got upset and asked why she did that. I was like, "she slapped you because you kept touching her after she told you to stop!!!" Ugh! Gross! Don't keep touching someone after they tell you to stop!!!!!! What's wrong with you??!! Priest and Star were irredeemable at that point. I didn't root for either of them. I hoped they both would be imprisoned for decades. A few things didn't make sense to me either. In the beginning Priest killed Mario for the Seismic vibrator because of a deadline, yet he had the truck after the deadline and kept it. Why didn't he just wait until Mario came back with the vibrator so he could steal it?How did he get away with stealing machinery from the company he worked for? Follett can do so much better.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jarek

    There are many good things about this novel, but for me the most interesting aspect is the contrast in character development. On one side there is Priest - a villain, whose story and personality are revealed gradually, steadily building fascinating, original and multidimensional character. You may not like him, but you see him as a real person. On the other side we have FBI agent Judy, who could be a poster child of social justice warriors: a woman of mixed descent, who is smart and works hard, There are many good things about this novel, but for me the most interesting aspect is the contrast in character development. On one side there is Priest - a villain, whose story and personality are revealed gradually, steadily building fascinating, original and multidimensional character. You may not like him, but you see him as a real person. On the other side we have FBI agent Judy, who could be a poster child of social justice warriors: a woman of mixed descent, who is smart and works hard, yet is terribly discriminated by her awful male boss for absolute no reason. Her character is paper-thin and can be summarized with just a simple statement that she's perfect. With such setup there is no other choice but root for the villain and hope that the irritating, walking perfection of agent Judy will fail miserably. I will not spoil the book by revealing whether it ends in a satisfactory way. Read it yourself, it's worth it.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Michèle

    A load of fun to read. from the 4th cover, i was expectingthe usual cold-blooded terrorist threat. It was all but. In the left corner: a pacifist commune is in turmoil as a government project threatens to flood the land where they’ve been peacefully settled for three decades, successfully making wine to generate what little monetary income they need. We root for them, and even the crafty ex-con leader, Priest, an illiterated adult. How he gets out of hairy situations while only able to scribble A load of fun to read. from the 4th cover, i was expectingthe usual cold-blooded terrorist threat. It was all but. In the left corner: a pacifist commune is in turmoil as a government project threatens to flood the land where they’ve been peacefully settled for three decades, successfully making wine to generate what little monetary income they need. We root for them, and even the crafty ex-con leader, Priest, an illiterated adult. How he gets out of hairy situations while only able to scribble his name is priceless! They hatch a scheme to stop the flooding, by threatening to detonate an earthquake. There is some interesting seismology, and an escalation into violence (alas, alas). In the right corner, Judy, a competent FBI agent working under an incompetent boss who belittle her achievements.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Michael Forrester

    I found this to be quite awful when borrowed from my grandfather. They were having sex in the middle of the road for some reason. The main character, Priest, has a son by the name of Smiler. That is when I abandoned all remaining hope this would turn out well. The red hardcover does look rather nice so I will keep it as a display piece for the time being.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Rosalie

    I've never read a Ken Follett before but he does write a ripping yarn. Perfect holiday read.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Michael Redd

    This is the first Follett book I have read. It starts a little slow, but as you read on you get that it is intended to be this way. As the action increases the pace follows.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Steve Shilstone

    The dude can do a thriller and make you root for the good gal and the bad guy.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Rosemary June

    I like Ken Follet books generally, but this book first published in 1998 and although an easy read, is a bit out of date now.

  24. 5 out of 5

    ninkasi

    Meh. Not his best

  25. 4 out of 5

    Fran

    I love reading the older Ken Follett books. Here we have Commune dwellers who have been in their secluded community for 25 years. The leaders are Priest and Star, who left the creature comforts of everyday living to find peace and tranquility. And they did, living a simple life running a vineyard in CA and leasing government land. When the governor of CA announces he wants to build a damn, Star's lease is not renewed and the commune dwellers had to evacuate the land. Priest refused to leave and I love reading the older Ken Follett books. Here we have Commune dwellers who have been in their secluded community for 25 years. The leaders are Priest and Star, who left the creature comforts of everyday living to find peace and tranquility. And they did, living a simple life running a vineyard in CA and leasing government land. When the governor of CA announces he wants to build a damn, Star's lease is not renewed and the commune dwellers had to evacuate the land. Priest refused to leave and hated the democratic leaders who insisted on destroying the land by building power plants. He decides to threaten the Governor claiming he can cause an earthquake and if he did not want statewide devastation he needed to stop building power plants. When Priest met Melanie who had access to information on fault lines and when he was able to steal a seismic vibrator his plan started to take shape. Judy Maddox is the FBI agent who uncovers Priest's past a.k.a. Ricky Granger, and does everything she can to stop the killing and destruction an earthquake can cause. Does she believe an earthquake can be manmade? When two occur on the day and time Priest predicted she takes no chances in disbelieving him. The book is fast paced and full of the excitement that Ken Follett know how to deliver.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Tim

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I've read a few of Ken Follet's books, most notably "The Pillars of the Earth," a vast, extremely enjoyable tome. "World Without End" promises to be equally engaging (although one of my friends describes it as the first one wrapped in a bit of a different scenario, but I'm gonna read it anyway). I've also read and thoroughly enjoyed "Eye of the Needle" and "The Man from St. Petersburg." In this book, Mr. Follet takes yet another direction, thriller genre for sure, but this time in the form of a I've read a few of Ken Follet's books, most notably "The Pillars of the Earth," a vast, extremely enjoyable tome. "World Without End" promises to be equally engaging (although one of my friends describes it as the first one wrapped in a bit of a different scenario, but I'm gonna read it anyway). I've also read and thoroughly enjoyed "Eye of the Needle" and "The Man from St. Petersburg." In this book, Mr. Follet takes yet another direction, thriller genre for sure, but this time in the form of a group of old hippies whose commune is threatened by the building of a dam in California, and the leader, "Priest," with a less-than-upstanding-citizen" past steals a "seismic vibrator," to threaten California with earthquakes unless the governor agrees to stop production of power plants. Fun premise, with some disturbing imagery, but the characters are interesting, the romance angle predictable, the action nicely developed and some surprises, but alas not enough of 'em. Denouement has a couple more surprises, which I liked, but overall too predictable, although I learned a LOT about seismology and earthquakes. No matter, I got a LOAD of Ken Follet to read.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Judy King

    What's better than finding a book by an author you respect and enjoy -- in a genre you don't expect. I've read Ken Follett's epics about the building of medieval castles, his giant series about generations of a US family, and even several of his WWII and Spy novels.....but this was different... When California announces plans to build several new lakes that will flood "fairly unused" territory and improve water usage for the state, the old hippies, still living in a commune with no utilities, mon What's better than finding a book by an author you respect and enjoy -- in a genre you don't expect. I've read Ken Follett's epics about the building of medieval castles, his giant series about generations of a US family, and even several of his WWII and Spy novels.....but this was different... When California announces plans to build several new lakes that will flood "fairly unused" territory and improve water usage for the state, the old hippies, still living in a commune with no utilities, money or conveniences are distraught and then determined to handle the situation by threatening the governor. If he doesn't call off the waterways, they will cause an earthquake. Thus begins a tale of planning, theft of giant machinery to set off vibrations to throw the delicately balanced subterranean plates into a full fledged earthquake. A sharp young female FBI agent is hard on their trail -- until her superiors, disturbed by her expertise take her off the case and back to making coffee in the office. Good twists and turns and great plot lines....Highly recommended.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Shannon

    I haven't found a Ken Follet book that I don't enjoy. This one was no exception. This is about a group of aged hippies attempting to coerce the California government into halting the building of power plants. They intend to keep it peaceful and expect that the governor will cede to their demands and then they can go back to living their lives peacefully in their commune. Of course it doesn't turn out that way. The governor is non-responsive to their request. So, they up their game and make furth I haven't found a Ken Follet book that I don't enjoy. This one was no exception. This is about a group of aged hippies attempting to coerce the California government into halting the building of power plants. They intend to keep it peaceful and expect that the governor will cede to their demands and then they can go back to living their lives peacefully in their commune. Of course it doesn't turn out that way. The governor is non-responsive to their request. So, they up their game and make further threats under the name of The Hammer of Eden. My feelings on the hippy group and their leader, Ricky Granger, fluctuated quite a bit throughout the story. At some points in the story I felt bad for them while at other points I didn't. There are entwined stories of frustration, fury, and impotence amongst the FBI agents involved in the case. It's very intense and will keep you turning the pages until the end.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Dianeparente62gmail.com

    The FBI vs an earthquake-causing cult. Not a plot you encounter everyday but in Ken Follett' hands it becomes a fascinating battle of wits and wills. A peaceful cult has its mountainous home and vineyards threatened by a power plant. The psychopathic, manipulative cult leader decides to threaten and actually accomplish two earthquakes in an attempt to force the California governor to order an end to the building of all new power plots. His fanatic ruthlessness becomes increasingly obvious as the The FBI vs an earthquake-causing cult. Not a plot you encounter everyday but in Ken Follett' hands it becomes a fascinating battle of wits and wills. A peaceful cult has its mountainous home and vineyards threatened by a power plant. The psychopathic, manipulative cult leader decides to threaten and actually accomplish two earthquakes in an attempt to force the California governor to order an end to the building of all new power plots. His fanatic ruthlessness becomes increasingly obvious as the featured FBI agent struggles to prevent a third earthquake. "Chilling thriller" might be a slight overstatement but definitely a good read.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Karen Smith

    A reasonable plot, but very disappointing characters and language.

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