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Indiana Jones and the Philosopher's Stone Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 1995

4.2 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Max McCoy is an award-winning journalist and author whose novels include The Sixth Rider and Sons of Fire. He lives in Pittsburgh, Kansas.
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Product Details

  • Series: Indiana Jones (Book 9)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam (April 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553561960
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553561968
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.8 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #245,832 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Max McCoy is an award-winning novelist and journalist. He's a member of Mystery Writers of America and is the creator of the Ophelia Wylde paranormal mystery series.

The first book in the series, "Of Grave Concern," was launched in July 2013 at the Boot Hill Museum Complex in Dodge City, Kansas. The novel is set in 1877 in Dodge City and surroundings. It was named a 2014 Notable Book by the State Library of Kansas.

"The Spirit is Willing," the second book in the Ophelia Wylde paranormal mystery series, was released in July 2014.

McCoy is also known for his dark and offbeat westerns (which have been described as "western noir") and his original Indiana Jones adventures for Bantam and licensed by Lucasfilm.

He won the Spur award for best novel in 2008 from the Western Writers of America for "Hellfire Canyon." It's the story of a 13-year-old boy and his mother who walk across Missouri during the Civil War and become part of the gang led by Alf Bolin, the notorious Ozark serial killer. "Hellfire Canyon" was also named a Kansas 2008 Notable Book.

In 2011, the third book in the "Hellfire" trilogy, "Damnation Road," also won a Spur. McCoy is the author of many other books, including the novelization of Steven Spielberg's epic miniseries, "Into the West."

His fiction debut, "The Sixth Rider," about the 1892 raid on Coffeyville's banks by the Dalton Gang, was published by Doubleday and won the Spur/Medicine Pipe Award for Best First Novel from Western Writers.

USA Today has described his writing as "powerful." In addition to westerns and historical fiction, McCoy also writes contemporary adventures. Publishers Weekly called his novel, "The Moon Pool," an "intelligent thriller... tightly drawn characters, a vile villain and a satisfying, thought-provoking conclusion make this a compelling read."

McCoy grew up in Baxter Springs and most of his books are set in Kansas or Missouri. He began his career in journalism at the Pittsburg Morning Sun and writing for pulp magazines such as "True Detective" and "Front-Page Detective." As investigative writer for The Joplin Globe, he won first-place awards in investigative journalism for his stories on serial killers and hate groups.

McCoy's an associate professor at Emporia State University at Emporia, Kansas, and director of the Tallgrass Writing Workshop.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on February 27, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Overall, I would say that this was a good book. However, there are a few things that bothered me.
1. The opening sequence was, I feel, meant to mimic the opening of Raiders in an attempt at a tie-in - Maybe Indy doesn't have much luck at procuring Skull Artifacts? But unfortunately it felt more like jungle re-tread than new territory.
2. Evidently Indiana Jones can't find anyone but Redheads to fall for. This seems to be a common thread amongst all three Authors of this series. I mean, I like a good Redhead as much as the next guy, but come on! Not to mention I felt that McCoy was trying too hard to make Alecia Dunstin an independent, free-willed type rather than a three-dimensional character.
3. I really liked the Sarducci character and felt that he was a good solid character with plenty of background, etc. But Alistair Dunstin was cardboard at best. He was really a disappointment after waiting the entire novel to meet him. Not to mention the fact that McCoy foreshadowed him too much. You knew what he was going to do before he did.
4. The book just ended. I can't really say that I appreciate books that just end. Even though the next book, Indiana Jones and the Dinosaur Eggs, pretty well picks up where Philosopher's Stone leaves off, the book built you up until the end and then just kind of petered out in a Deus Ex Machination. On a side note, Alistair Dunstin's last act, in an attempt at repentance, was lame at best and most definitely out of character.
As I said before, overall it is a good book. If you are an Indiana Jones fan and a fan of the books in particular, I would definitely recommend this book. It will entertain you for the few hours it takes to read it.
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The first of McCoy's Indiana Jones book closely adheres to the script patterns of the original films (and, if one thinks on it, almost the same pattern the Bond films have long followed before that). On first inspection, it is almost paint-by-numbers Indiana Jones. Some fans really like this formulaic approach. We have a pretitle temple labyrinth sequence, meeting with government agents establishing the "macguffin", Indy's meeting with Marcus to discuss how dangerous the adventure will be, meeting up with a damsel, various encounters with villains, mildly romantic interlude with female partner, another ancient temple labyrinth (amazing how dedicated ancient civilizations were to building enormously complicated death traps that survive the ages to shift and transform with minute perfection thousands of years later and then transform back somehow when other raiders only get so far), and, of couse, the macabre supernatural ending where villains are dispatched by their own greed or vanity. I'm amused by the review that questioned whether McCoy had seen the films and wonder if that person wasn't looking for a direct novelization of a film. This may be the most faithful continuation novel of any franchise I've ever encountered.

Despite the obvious trappings of the film formula, McCoy does a really wonderful job with dialogue and in extending the character to consider realworld issues of the day like rationalizing the esoteric nature of his adventurous lifestyle during the Great Depression. He is often held in disdain by fellow archaeologists and is disheartened when he is not recognized, or when the head of Princeton calls his bluff and fires him. The alchemist element is original as is McCoy's choice of fascist fliers over Nazis.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Professor Indiana Jones finds himself discharged from his teaching position at Princeton and sets out for London to recover the Voynich Manuscript. Some believe the Manuscript contains the secrets to turning lead into gold and granting immortality. Others believe it to be nothing other than a hoax. Indiana seems to think there might be some truth to its supposed powerful secrets as he finds himself being chased by Mussolini's troops. Not only that but the item in question has disappeared and Indy's convinced that an eccentric British alchemist and a crazy Renaissance scholar, named Sarducci, are involved. Which causes a bit of tension between Indy and his love interest in the story, the beautiful Alecia Dunstin, because she's the missing alchemist's sister. Their quest takes them straight to the heart of Rome.

I picked up INDIANA JONES AND THE PHILOSOPHER'S STONE because I had already read INDIANA JONES AND THE DINOSAUR EGGS which is the second book in the series of four Indiana Jones books by Max McCoy. Each of McCoy's books are tied together through the beginning as Indy searches, finds, and has a crystal skull stolen from him time after time.

As both an Indiana Jones story and an adventure story, INDIANA JONES AND THE PHILOSOPHER'S STONE was average. The opening sequence seemed like it was almost copied directly from the opening sequence of RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK and the there were parts towards the end of the novel that are similar to parts of INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM. I liked the character of Alecia Dunstin, but she didn't seem very developed in this story. The ending felt rushed with hardly any sense of closer. However, I did really enjoy the sequence where Indy goes for a ride aboard and Italian 1930's dirigible.
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Indiana Jones and the Philosopher's Stone
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