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Area 7 Hardcover – February 23, 2002


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Reilly, the pedal-to-the-metal action novelist from Australia, returns here with yet another inelegant yet oddly invigorating rip-snorter about what else world domination. The setting this time is Area 7, a top-secret military outpost in the barren outback of Utah where government scientists are trying to perfect a new vaccine that will protect Americans from the Sinovirus, a deadly disease invented by the Chinese to kill everyone on Earth except themselves. A rogue air force general, the evil Caesar Russell, has other plans, however. During a visit by the president of the United States, Russell and his band of elite mercenaries capture Area 7. Their aim: kill the president, take over the country and use the Sinovirus to poison all but members of the white race. But Marine Capt. Shane Schofield isn't going to let that happen. With his usual mix of unflagging bravery and superhuman strength Schofield starred in Reilly's 1999 American debut Ice Station the relentless Marine and his tight group of highly competent sidekicks battle Russell on land, water and in space. As is Reilly's style, the action moves at a scenery-blurring pace, and his third novel (following last year's Temple) can make for exhausting reading. He employs just about every tactic both clever and crude to keep the suspense afloat. Character development is nil, and dialogue is at times comic-strip bad. Yet the sheer frenzy of Reilly's approach can inspire awe. How many heroes, after all, can kill an enemy aboard the space shuttle in outer space, then return to earth and dispatch another foe by pushing him into a pool full of meat-eating Komodo dragons all over the course of less than an hour? Speed demons, take note. Author tour.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Capt. Shane Scofield hero of Reilly's first novel, Ice Station has been assigned to guard the President on his helicopter journey to the Nevada desert, where he will conduct a routine inspection of air force bases. Of special interest is the high-security zone, Area 7, wherein Gen. Caesar Russell lurks. Having turned rogue, Russell plans to destroy the United States and sics his elite forces on the President. If he dies, a microchip in his heart will trigger the explosion of nuclear bombs planted by Russell throughout the United States. Scofield, of course, is the man to foil the evil plot and save the day. The action is nonstop and includes shootouts, crazed convicts, wild animals, and, in an eerily timely subplot, a new strain of racially selective biological warfare that has been developed at Area 7. Although Russell's rationale for the destructive chase is implausible and confusing, Area 7 is still an exciting romp. For larger collections. Robert Conroy, Warren, MI
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books; First Edition edition (February 23, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312266855
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312266851
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.5 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (189 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #907,523 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Matthew Reilly is the international bestselling author of eight novels: The 6 Sacred Stones, 7 Deadly Wonders, Ice Station, Temple, Contest, Area 7, Scarecrow, and the children's book Hover Car Racer, and one novella, Hell Island. His books are published in more than eighteen languages in twenty countries, and he has sold more than 3.5 million copies worldwide.

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By scot16897 VINE VOICE on July 18, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was thrilled to find Area 7 was available. I picked Ice Station up in Australia and was about a third of the way into it when I bought Reilly's other books, it was so good. Now I don't want to sound like I have no ability to suspend my disbelief, as Ice Station was a flash-bang ride which would realitically kill even a superhuman, but Area 7 was a little too much to be believed. The hero is inhumanly fast, strong and tough, with the endurance of the Terminator. I have no problem with this, I know it's not a non-fiction book. At the same time, a few of the feats Scarecrow does are SO impossible that they defied even my ability to suspend my own disbelief. That said, it was a fun read, just not what I'd hoped in the follow-up to the magnificent Ice Station. I understand Reilly is working on a third Scarecrow book. Can't imagine where he'll get sent next, or what he'll have to survive, but I'll get it regardless.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Rottenberg's rotten book review on January 3, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Area-7 - an underground fortress in SW America - is one of the most secure military installations on Earth. Using tons of high-tech, most of it involving bio-warfare tested on condemned criminals, Area-7 scientists develop cures for diseases engineered by America's enemies. Unfortunately, "Caesar" Russel, a disgraced and supposedly executed former USAF general, seizes Area-7 and locks everybody - including the President and his loyal marine contingent - inside. Russel has implanted a microscopic transmitter on the president's heart connecting the unwitting chief to nuclear warheads placed in every major northern city. All will explode should Caesar's troopers locate and kill the president. Also, the "football" - the president's nuclear-war trigger - will signal the bombs unless the president keys in his palm print every 90 minutes. With his special shock troops, Caesar can easily kill the President, but he needs the Chief to suffer the humiliation deserved by all politicians. Unbeknownst to Russell, Area-7's South African chief bio-chemist has his own plans now that he's developed a cure for a Chinese bio-engineered disease. Unknown to him, some of Ceasar's own men have gone into business themselves - with the Chinese. Unexpected by them is the role to be played by Area-7's residents - the vilest criminals in America. And a nasty shock to them all is "Scarecrow" Schofield - the world's toughest Marine and the novel's hero.

I wasn't looking for literature - deep characters, a complex plot, irony - yet "Area 7" still left me hungry. Reilly not only tosses character development, he practically junks the idea characters - each is a walking mannequin who knows his dossier and never deviates.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J. Moy on July 18, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Read the outline of this book and you will realise how ridiculous it really is. Given that the author is about 20yrs old, he may be forgiven for this immature plot, but given that most of his potential customers are over 20yrs it is unforgiveable to market this as adult fiction... it would be better suited to children's fiction.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Rottenberg's rotten book review on June 1, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Area-7 - an underground fortress in SW America - is one of the most secure military installations on Earth. Using tons of high-tech, most of it involving bio-warfare tested on condemned criminals, Area-7 scientists develop cures for diseases engineered by America's enemies.

Unfortunately, "Caesar" Russel, a supposedly executed USAF general, seizes Area-7 and locks everybody in - including the President and his marine contingent. Russel has implanted a microscopic transmitter on the president's heart connecting the unwitting chief to nuclear warheads placed across America which will detonate should Caesar's troopers get the president. Also, the "football" - the president's nuclear-war trigger - will signal the bombs unless the president keys in his palm print every 90 minutes. With his special shock troops, Caesar can easily kill the Chief, but he needs the President to suffer the humiliation deserved by all politicians. Unbeknownst to Russell, Area-7's chief bio-chemist has his own plans now that he's developed a cure for a Chinese bio-engineered disease. Unknown to him, some of Ceasar's own men have gone into business themselves - with the Chinese. Unexpected by them is the role to be played by Area-7's residents - the vilest criminals in America. And a nasty shock to everybody is "Scarecrow" Schofield - the world's toughest Marine and the novel's hero.

"Area-7" is action-packed to the exclusion of everything else, including some stuff that even action-packed novels need to make us appreciate the action. I wasn't looking for literature - deep characters, a complex plot, irony - yet "Area 7" not only tosses character development, he practically junks the idea characters. Each character is a walking mannequin never deviating from their dossier.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Terence M. Hines on December 27, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
And I do mean REALLY STUPID. Like a previous reviewer, I bought this to keep me occupied on a long flight. When, within the first 20 or so pages, the author introduces two made-up gimmicks that are central to the plot, I knew I was in trouble. First up is a liquid nuclear explosive. Yeah, right. Anyone who even slept through high school physics would know that's a crock. Then there is the super oxygen carrying blood transfusion that gets the major bad guy through an execution. In a science fiction story, the spare use of such gimmicks might be ok. But here the author uses them because he just isn't bright enough to come up with a good story otherwise.

Had I been on a train trip, this book would have gone right out the train window. However, they frown on opening windows on airplanes so I just left it on the plane. I probably should have taken it off with me and tossed it in the trash to save the next passanger in my seat from having to deal with this.
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