Monday, 27 February 2017

Book Review: Landing Party by Rick Chesler

When a new island forms in the South Pacific after a volcanic eruption, nearby nations quarrel over who owns the fresh land. One of the countries sends an advance scouting party to plant flags and lay claim to the nascent isle, but none of that party returns. The sponsoring nation is accused of deception. Political rivals assert that members of the landing party are still on the island, building a military installation in secret.

In response, A United Nations expedition is assembled to land a second, neutral outfit comprised of scientists and humanitarian aid workers. This team is well-equipped and ready to report back to the U.N. in-situ about the fate of the first party. But once on the island, they discover that along with hot magma, something else has been dredged up from deep within the Earth...something alive.

My Review:
An earthquake leads to a volcanic that leaves a new island in the sea. Tonga lay claim to it but when a boarding party vanish, the UN put together a team to find out what happened and explore the island. Amongst the team is a spy who wants to plant evidence of the Tonga claim as they have done a deal to allow the US to use it as a military base and a potential diamond thief. But when the team discover what really happened to the Tongans, surviving an island of dinosaurs to be rescued is going to be only the start of their problems.

The UN team are a mixture of photographers, geologists, adventurers, experts in communications, language and medicine, everyone needed to explore and document the island. The sub plots are having an expert in diamonds who is determined to steal enough to retire and the spy who is getting paid to plant evidence. I was a bit confused by this as the UN team are looking for the missing Tonga team who went to the island and even finding one of their bodies or supplies is proof enough that they had claimed the land, so why need to plant evidence they were there? Nobody else had sent a team there! I found that a bit odd. The team splits into two to explore the most likely spots-the outside of the volcano and the lake inside the crater, and that is when the dinosaur fun begins!

This book is one of those typical b movie stories that I quite enjoy as a fun dinosaur romp that isn't to be taken too seriously. The plot here is pretty thin but who cares when there are lots of dinosaurs trying to eat people! That's what we want isn't it? On this island the dinosaurs are encased in rock so when one smashes or is damaged, or even starts to twitch and hatch, it is a good idea to get running as you have no idea what is going to break free each time! There are also a couple of characters that you really want to see being eaten which adds to the fun.

There is a wide range of all of the best dinosaurs in this book. They are in the water, in the caves, in the air and charging across open ground to get you. There is no safe place anywhere on this island and as they try to survive and find a way to call for help, the team are being picked off gradually by the predators. Raptors, T Rex, pterodactyls, allosaurus...they and many more are there to entertain so I was quite happy at the dinosaur variety.

These are never literary masterpieces but it's an enjoyable dinosaur-fest and it kept me pretty entertained overall.
Read December 2016.
star rating photo: Three Star Rating 3stars.png


  1. Dinosaurs! Yay for pterodactyls- I like people to be flown off!

    1. I love all flying dinosaurs! There should be more books and films with peckathons!