A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near her home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings. But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand.
Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved—its origins, architects, and purpose unknown. Its carbon dating defies belief; military reports are redacted; theories are floated, then rejected.
But some can never stop searching for answers.
Rose Franklin is now a highly trained physicist leading a top secret team to crack the hand’s code. And along with her colleagues, she is being interviewed by a nameless interrogator whose power and purview are as enigmatic as the provenance of the relic. What’s clear is that Rose and her compatriots are on the edge of unraveling history’s most perplexing discovery—and figuring out what it portends for humanity. But once the pieces of the puzzle are in place, will the result prove to be an instrument of lasting peace or a weapon of mass destruction?
This was an exciting and realistic book with a lot of intriguing dynamics.
Though initially I was hesitant about the style, I was quickly pulled into this book. It was told through reports and interviews which made it a lot of fun because I had to imagine how the characters were interacting with one another and their body language. Specific details were rare but pointed and proved fascinating--the significance of Kung Pao chicken, for instance, is something I'm still wondering about.
I loved the politics of this book and how well thought they were. A few countries became involved, and the tensions were intriguing. I felt like all of this was realistic and I could envision this happening in real life. Seeing the priorities of the governments and how their intelligence networks operated was cool, and there was a scene in a very remote part of Asia that was very deftly thought out.
The commentary on today's governance was incredibly intriguing, especially that on the US Army and on the president's office. I enjoyed the behind the scenes look we got into how military operations might work and into the mentality of certain soldiers. The characters were well thought out and played their roles quite well.
I adored the way it was told, and the style of the interviewer. This made the story fascinating and I was perpetually trying to figure out who the interviewer was and what his/her role in the politics was. Neuval did an incredible job of weaving him/her in while making him have a very distinct personality.
I'm left with several questions at the end and I am incredibly infuriated by these questions, but in the best way--I'll be thinking about this book for a while.
Definitely looking forward to more books by Neuvel.
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.