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7 Deadly Wonders (Jack West Junior Series #1)

7 Deadly Wonders (Jack West Junior Series #1)

3.8 141
by Matthew Reilly

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Indiana Jones meets The Da Vinci Code in this nonstop action-packed thriller about the greatest treasure hunt of all time—a headlong race to find the seven wonders of the ancient world.

An ancient secret...a team of heroes...the adventure of a lifetime.

A legend of the ancient world decrees that every 4,500 years, a terrible solar event will wreak


Indiana Jones meets The Da Vinci Code in this nonstop action-packed thriller about the greatest treasure hunt of all time—a headlong race to find the seven wonders of the ancient world.

An ancient secret...a team of heroes...the adventure of a lifetime.

A legend of the ancient world decrees that every 4,500 years, a terrible solar event will wreak worldwide destruction...but whoever sets the Golden Capstone atop the Great Pyramid at Giza will avert disaster and gain the ultimate prize: a millennium of world dominance.

Now the Sun is turning once again and nation will battle nation to retrieve the missing Capstone...but a group of small nations, led by super-soldier Jack West Jr., bands together to prevent any one country from attaining this frightening power. Thus the greatest treasure hunt of all time begins— an adrenaline-fueled race on a global battlefield.

From the Colossus of Rhodes to the Hanging Gardens of Babylon to the Great Egyptian Pyramid itself, unlock the thrills of Seven Deadly Wonders.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Nobody writes action like Matthew Reilly." — Vince Flynn , New York Times bestselling author of Act of Treason

"Exciting and Entertaining." — Chicago Sun Times

"A nonstop rollercoaster ride." — Library Journal

Publishers Weekly
Full-stop "Screams. Splashing. Crunching. Blood" punctuate and come to epitomize Reilly's (Area 7; Ice Station) latest video game-style thriller about a race to find the seven pieces of the Golden Capstone that once sat atop the Great Pyramid at Giza. Two millennia ago, Alexander the Great broke the Capstone into seven pieces and hid them in the seven ancient wonders of the world. According to legend, whoever finds and replaces them during a rare solar event called "Tartarus Rotation" (predicted for March 20, 2006) could secure a thousand-year reign of absolute power. The race is on, and among the contenders are the United States, a coalition of European nations (and the Vatican), an Islamic terrorist group, and a team of smaller nations (including Canada, Ireland and New Zealand) led by the novel's hero, Australian Jack West Jr., a next-generation Indiana Jones. The Europeans, goaded by evil Jesuit Francisco del Piero, and the U.S., headed by Jack's nemesis Col. Marshall Judah, want the Capstone for their own aggrandizement, while Jack's noble team believes it's too potent to belong to any one superpower. The "greatest treasure hunt in history"-a nonstop roller-coaster ride that lurches around the globe-might make a summer blockbuster-if American audiences will swallow their compatriots as the baddies. (Jan.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Maybe it is the attack on Guantanamo Bay to capture a bin Laden-type terrorist, or perhaps it is the theft of a priceless artifact from the Louvre. It could be the umpteenth escape from certain death, but this book is a roller coaster of a ride. Reilly, author of the recent best-selling teen novel Hover Car Racer, takes the nonstop action of that story, adds ten times more death-defying stunts, and comes up with this convoluted tale of the search for unimaginable power located within remnants of the Seven Wonders of the World. Jack West, an Australian commando with an artificial "superarm," leads a small group of soldiers who come from countries still friendly with the United States but irritated by its actions in Iraq. With them is Lily, a precocious little girl who is the daughter of an oracle and who knows the secrets of the Wonders. Trying to explain this "thrill-in-every-paragraph" story read by William Dufris is impossible, but it's jam-packed with just enough testosterone to keep male listeners demanding more escapist fiction from Reilly. Joseph L. Carlson, Allan Hancock Coll., Lompoc, CA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
The names may have changed but the game remains the same as Reilly (Scarecrow, 2004, etc.) offers up another absurdly over-the-top adventure with this globetrotting thriller. It's 2006, just a week before the sun's hottest point-the Tartarus Sunspot-rotates into direct alignment with the earth, and governments all around the world are a-twitter about the long-lost Golden Capstone-the precious piece of gold that once sat atop Egypt's famed Great Pyramid at Giza. Why? Well, for starters, unchallenged global domination. A few thousand years back, Alexander the Great split the Capstone into seven parts, secreting them away in the ancient architectural marvels known today as the Seven Wonders of the World. Now, whoever pieces them back together in time for the Tartarus Sunspot's rotation will rule the world for 1,000 years. Which, of course, is why Australian commando Jack West Jr. is racing around the globe with a crack squad of soldiers and scholars, gunning to keep the prize from falling into the wrong hands. Along the way, the team battles shady Catholic priests, sadistic Special Ops sergeants, 3,000 or so Guantanamo Bay marines and more superheated lava slides than you can count. No one would mistake Reilly for a master stylist, but he certainly manages to keep the action coming, with the book's endless run of treasure hunts, high-speed chases and gun battles reading like the wet dream of some especially militaristic adolescent. Ridiculous, but fun.

Product Details

Pocket Books
Publication date:
Jack West Junior Series , #1
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.70(w) x 4.20(h) x 1.30(d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One: The Greatest Statue In History




MARCH 14, 2006, 4:55 P.M.


The nine figures raced through the crocodile-infested swamp on foot, moving fast, staying low.

The odds were stacked against them.

Their rivals numbered in excess of two hundred men.

They had only nine.

Their rivals had massive logistical and technical support: choppers, floodlights for night work, and boats of every kind — gunboats, houseboats, communications boats, three giant dredging barges for the digging, and that wasn't even mentioning the temporary dam they'd managed to build.

The Nine were only carrying what they'd need inside the mine.

And now — the Nine had just discovered — a third force was on its way to the mountain, close behind them; a much larger and nastier force than that of their immediate foes, who were nasty enough.

By any reckoning it was a hopelessly lost cause, with enemies in front of them and enemies behind them, but the Nine kept running anyway.

Because they had to.

They were a last-ditch effort.

The last throw of the dice.

They were the very last hope of the small group of nations they represented.

Their immediate rivals — a coalition of European nations — had found the northern entrance to the mine two days ago and were now well advanced in its tunnel system.

A radio transmission that had been intercepted an hour before revealed that this pan-European force — French troops, German engineers, and an Italian project leader — had just arrived at the Third Gate inside the mine. Once they breached that, they would be inside the Grand Cavern itself.

They were progressing quickly.

Which meant they were also well versed in the difficulties found inside the mine.

Fatal difficulties.


But the Europeans' progress hadn't been entirely without loss: three members of their point team had died gruesome deaths in a snare on the first day. But the leader of the European expedition — a Vatican-based Jesuit priest named Francisco del Piero — had not let their deaths slow him down.

Single-minded, unstoppable, and completely devoid of sympathy, del Piero urged his people onward. Considering what was at stake, the deaths were an acceptable loss.

The Nine kept charging through the swamp on the south side of the mountain, heads bent into the rain, feet pounding through the mud.

They ran like soldiers — low and fast, with balance and purpose; ducking under branches, hurdling bogs, always staying in single file.

In their hands, they held guns: MP7s, M16s, Steyr AUGs. In their thigh holsters were pistols of every kind.

On their backs: packs of various sizes, all bristling with ropes, climbing gear, and odd-looking steel struts.

And above them, soaring gracefully over the treetops, was a small shape, a bird of some sort.

Seven of the Nine were indeed soldiers.

Crack troops. Special forces. All from different countries.

The remaining two members were civilians, the elder of whom was a long-bearded sixty-five-year-old professor named Maximilian T. Epper, call sign: Wizard.

The seven military members of the team had somewhat fiercer nicknames: Huntsman, Witch Doctor, Archer, Bloody Mary, Saladin, Matador, and Gunman.

Oddly, however, on this mission they had all acquired new call signs: Woodsman, Fuzzy, Stretch, Princess Zoe, Pooh Bear, Noddy, and Big Ears.

These revised call signs were the result of the ninth member of the team:

A little girl of ten.

The mountain they were approaching was the last in a long spur of peaks that ended near the Sudanese-Ethiopian border.

Down through these mountains, flowing out of Ethiopia and into the Sudan, poured the Angereb River. Its waters paused briefly in this swamp before continuing on into the Sudan, where they would ultimately join the Nile.

The chief resident of the swamp was Crocodylus niloticus, the notorious Nile crocodile. Reaching sizes of up to twenty feet, the Nile crocodile is known for its great size, its brazen cunning, and its ferocity of attack. It is the most man-eating crocodilian in the world, killing upwards of three hundred people every year.

While the Nine were approaching the mountain from the south, their EU rivals had set up a base of operations on the northern side, a base that looked like a veritable floating city.

Command boats, mess boats, barracks boats, and gunboats, the small fleet connected by a network of floating bridges and all facing toward the focal point of their operation: the massive coffer dam that they had built against the northern flank of the mountain.

It was, one had to admit, an engineering masterpiece: a 110-yard-long, forty-foot-high curved retaining dam that held back the waters of the swamp to reveal a square stone doorway carved into the base of the mountain forty feet below the waterline.

The artistry on the stone doorway was extraordinary.

Egyptian hieroglyphs covered every square inch of its frame — but taking pride of place in the very center of the lintel stone that surmounted the doorway was a glyph often found in pharaonic tombs in Egypt:

Two figures, bound to a staff bearing the jackal head of Anubis, the Egyptian god of the Underworld.

This was what the afterlife had in store for grave robbers — eternal bondage to Anubis. Not a nice way to spend eternity.

The message was clear: do not enter.

The structure inside the mountain was an ancient mine delved during the reign of Ptolemy I, around the year 300 B.C.

During the great age of Egypt, the Sudan was known as "Nubia," a word derived from the Egyptian word for gold: nub.

Nubia: the Land of Gold.

And indeed it was. It was from Nubia that the ancient Egyptians sourced the gold for their many temples and treasures.

Records unearthed in Alexandria revealed that this mine had run out of gold seventy years after its founding, after which it gained a second life as a quarry for the rare hard stone, diorite. Once it was exhausted of diorite — around the year 226 B.C. — Pharaoh Ptolemy III decided to use the mine for a very special purpose.

To this end, he dispatched his best architect — Imhotep V — and a force of two thousand men.

They would work on the project in absolute secrecy for three whole years.

Copyright © 2006 by Karanadon Entertainment Pty Ltd.


Meet the Author

Matthew Reilly is the New York Times and #1 international bestselling author of numerous novels, including The Tournament, The Great Zoo of China, The Five Greatest Warriors, The Six Sacred Stones, Seven Deadly Wonders, Ice Station, Temple, Contest, Area 7, Scarecrow, the children’s book Hover Car Racer, and the novella, Hell Island. His books have been published in more than twenty languages in twenty countries, and he has sold more than seven million copies worldwide. Visit him at MatthewReilly.com and at Facebook.com/OfficialMatthewReilly.

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7 Deadly Wonders (Jack West Junior Series #1) 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 142 reviews.
smitty81 More than 1 year ago
Where to start? Im 24 and I hated to read for as long as I can remember. The place that I worked had gone bankrupt and we were basically there to make sure the place didnt blow away. I figured there was no better way to pass an uneventful 12 hr shift then to read a book. I just happed to pick up this book and I was in for a suprise! This book pulled me in like no other! I love reading about ancient artifacts, forgotten/hidden places and other mystical stuff.I found out that he was in the process of making a third. That book is on its way to my house as I write this. I just couldnt put these books down. I would come home from my 12 hour shift at 6am and keep reading instead of sleeping. They are that good! Im not sure what im going to do when im done reading "The Five Greatest Warriors". I hope matt will keep writing in this series. He had the seven deadly wonders, then the six sacred stones and now the five greatest warriors. I say keep going untill you get down to 1! I would deffantly read them all. As a matter of fact, I think im going to go through and re-read this series in the near future. This series just goes togther so well, kind of like a puzzle. I found myself sometimes going back to previous books to the current books would make sense. That is the only thing that I would caution, This series gets kind of deep and somewhat hard to follow and remember some of the previous read stuff to make sense of whats going on currently. I would recommend this book to people that like different types of books as this book covers history, artifacts, thrillers, mystery and even a little romance. I didnt touch to much on the contents of the book itself because it would be to hard to summerize and I dont want to ruin it for anyone. Read this series if you like fiction books like this, you wont regret it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is about the hunt for the Capstone of the Great Pyramid. Basically, ten years previous, a Oracle was born. The child is the only one that can read the lost language that points to the locations of the pieces of the Capstone. Since her birth, Lily has been raised in a secret compound among a few dedicated people that intent to keep the Capstone and it's great powers out of the hands of the Europeans and Americans. Present day, Lily has finally been able to translate the script and now they are in a race with the Europeans and Americans to get all the pieces. Jack West Jr. is the leader of the little group. But no matter how hard they try or no matter how obscure the location, they are getting beaten at every turn. It seems someone is giving their locations to the Americans. I really liked this book. There are a lot of historical things and possibilities. It was full of action and drama and had a quick pace. If you like action adventures like Clive Cussler, you will like this book.
nyc_book_lover More than 1 year ago
Completely over the top plot, limited character development, somewhat predictable. This is probably the fastest book I've ever read. I have Ice Station and Temple already, but haven't read them. I'm hoping that they are better than this one. Not a bad book, per se, but just SO over the top, it was ridiculous. I made myself finish it just to see where it went. Includes diagrams of the caves and traps, but not all of them. I'm not sure that they really helped comprehend what was happening. Somewhat interesting twist at the end. If you're on the beach for a couple of days and want a completely mindless read and the plot doesn't have to be believable at all, then get this book. Try not to let all the !'s bother you.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok first off i just want to say this is one of the best books ive ever read. It has action adventure romance and puts on a intersting spin to common american and catholic views. But i would like to say to all those people who say its offensive i dont agree with you i think that its intersting how it shows us americans as bad people cause to a lot of the world we are fairly bad people. Im not saying we are all terrible, but in the beging of the book it said how the specif organization cief was corrupted bysome bad people. It also said how the catholic religon isa ancient sun cult, but in other books such as percy jackson and the olynpians how the catholic religon was based on thegreek religon is that offensive too but its only speculation you idiots. I rest my case
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ok first off i'll admit this isnt reilly's best book. But that doesnt mean its bad either, 7DW is an awesome read for someone who likes to be entertained. yeah sometimes things get a bit too unrealistic, but who cares?! reilly's book have always been like this though the format is a bit different. you people will watch movies like Die Hard and love them but the same action in a book and its bad?! sorry but i think this story has a great plot with great characters and great action sequences. oh and to all those people who dont like the book cause America is 'the bad guy'.... get off your high horse. if something like this happened for real you know we would be all over it for the power, not to stop it. for some reason we are fine with the bad guys being american as long as its an american who is the good guy and stops them. as soon as its anyone else its disrespectful and horrible. oh and here is the biggest thing, ITS A PIECE OF FICTION!! who cares who the good and bad guys are? if they were chinese or arabs, americans would love it. sorry im usually not the one to rant like this but i hate it when people are hypocrites. Reilly delivers some of the best action/ adventure book out there today and this one does not dissapoint!though the story does end, there are sequels to this book though only one is out now. Six Sacred Stones is an okay book but i wouldve been happier if reilly would have thought of something else involing west or scarecrow.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I don't know whether to blame the author or his editor's' but I had to give up after about 60 pages. I counted at least a dozen inaccuracies or inconsistensies by that point. This may be a good story to some but anybody who knows anything about flying or the military will have a hard time getting past the errors enough to enjoy the tale. I finally had to call it quits when a 747 lands on a country asphalt road. I was willing to suspend belief for the completely implausable/impossible 'traps' in the first 40 pages but not a 747 doing that. This book was a waste of time. It seemed like it was written by a 12-year-old whose ideas of what 'neat' stuff airplanes and guns 'and all kinds of other things' can do should be included because they sound so cool regardless if they can actually do them or not.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ok, I like the genre, and I am not claiming to be a sophisticated snobby reader or anything, but my wife and I couldn't get over the amateurish quality of this book. I read a lot of fiction and have only not finished one novel -- this was a close second. The author uses a choppy, short-sentence style (and I don't mean in a Hemingway-esque sort of way) that is annoying after the first chapter. He also seems to think that adding a couple of dashes mid-sentence to leave the reader hanging is an amazing tension builder, as if I'm not already reading down to the next line. Here's how it feels: Wizard looked down and saw -- Dead bodies!! Then he lowered the rope. And there was -- Darkness!!! Darkness blacker than night! I'm serious, this is how it reads. I had to check with my wife to make sure this wasn't a kids book. And don't get me started on how many exclamation marks he uses. Yes, Matthew, I get it, you want us to feel the energy. Who was the editor on this book? Overall, the plot was incredibly outlandish and unbelievable -- I dare you to check out the synopsis on Wikipedia...it's more like a video game than a novel.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have seen SO MANY novels that throw in some form of connection to The DaVinci Code that it would seem even the latest Sci Fi novels even have some form of similarity--if it helps to sell books anyway...Personally I have read only TWO books that I would even remotely compare with The DaVinci Code: First would be James Rollins' 'Map Of Bones' and the second of course would be 'Seven Deadly Wonders' by Matthew Reilly. This is a well-researched Action/Adventure which takes everything you loved about TDVC and up's the ante by a factor of about a million. Don't believe me? Reilly has the unique talent for writing the absolute most adrenaline-filled action sequences I believe have EVER been written since publishing began. Sure that sounds rather presumptuous, but then again, if you haven't read Reilly, you wouldn't fully understand yet. Just crack open any of his novels and you will quickly become a believer. With the advent of such incredible action usually means something has to be sacrificed...and unfortunately for some of you, that will be an unforgiveable act--but personally it hasn't affected my personal love for his books one iota. So what was axed in favor of the tremendous speed of the story? Characterization. From what I can tell, in every single novel of Reilly's, the characters are ALL secondary to the STORY. Oh, and BEFORE you begin reading any of his novels, you absolutely MUST check your believability meter before even attempting one single page. Enter the world of Reilly understanding these rules beforehand and you are ready for THE biggest adventure-laced stories you are likely to ever read. Seven Deadly Wonders takes us on a global search for the original Wonders of the Ancient World. Of them all, only one still exists that anyone knows of (the Great Pyramid of Egypt) and at least one other has never even been proven to have ever existed at ALL. Ahh, but once you have all the ingredients, you have the ability to have global dominance for 1,000 years...hence the all-out effort to find them all first. Some who have read this have a very narrow viewpoint in that they cannot--or will not accept that at least in the pages of this novel some of the bad guys actually end up being American. This hasn't gone over well with some of Reilly's Yankee Fans. I say GET OVER IT. It's JUST a BOOK and keep in mind that it was AMERICAN heroes that have saved the day in virtually ALL of his pervious books. Say what you want, but I simply LOVED this one, and after discovering he was writing a sequel (that believe it or not he was going to make us wait until Jan. '08 to read), I have been anxiously awaiting reading it as well. If you like your stories bigger than life with the impact of a Texas Sized Meteor, check out Matthew Reilly today.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i am literally amazed after reading matt new book seven wonders of the world.b'coz it was not a typical matt book.wat happened man?.the book as it starts, really was good and adrenaline pumps.but as it goes on it lacks the thrill and fast paced script.only one thing is good that is we can know about seven ancient wonders which most them dont know.it was really interesting to get know abt these strange facts especially hanging gardens of babylon.of course the call sign assigned by the little girl is fun.the traps that was said to be designed by imhotep is really amzing.dont know whether it is fact or fiction either way its good to imagine. as far as anti american theme i dont find anything disturbing..cool.but let us expect a better one from matt soon.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Take this for what it is: pure adrenaline rush fueled by bullets, rockets, mines, ancient booby traps, death chambers, undecipherable scrolls, oracles, bad guys, good guys, hidden treasures, history, last second escapes, advanced technology . . . even several references to The DaVinci Code. Honestly, Jack West, Jr is the first character who could whip Clive Cussler's Dirk Pitt. It's a plot-driven story that weaves through the world with its own sense of timing, adventure and intrigue. Don't look for a lot of character development, but then again its the compelling action and Mr. Reilly's attention to details as you accompany the international (and diverse) team in search of the pieces of the capstone that moves the story at lightning speed. And by the way, I'm American and found no disrespect in his depiction of a U.S. villian.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am very thankful that this is not the first book I have read by Matt Reilley, if it had been I probably would not have picked another one up. The plot was ridiculous predictable and all over the place. the bad guy were cartoonish, all they needed was black mustaches to twirl. The 'heros' were flat and one dimentional and I didn't really care if any of them lived or died. If you want a real thrill ride I suggest you pick up his best book Temple, but if you are thinking about buying Seven Deadly Wonders don't
Guest More than 1 year ago
Non stop action and adventure, great for anyne who loved matt reilly's other books. If Scarecrow had a brother it would definitely be Jack West. And for everyone who gave this book at bad rating, id like to see if u could write sonething as talented. cheers
Guest More than 1 year ago
I found this book, to be an attention-grabbing, fascinating read, so detailed, it was like watching an action movie. I truly had difficulty putting it down, but did finish it in 2 nights. Reilly does an excellent job of mixing history with fiction to create a present day novel with just enough information to pull the reader in and hook them. Reilly is adept at keeping the story going, with the format dividing the book into sections coinciding with the dates, which interestingly, occurred the week I read this! While other readers critize the authenticity of the book, and implausible occurrences, one must remember that this is indeed a fictional novel loosely based on the truth. It is meant to entertain, and it does so wonderfully.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Without doubt the worst book I have ever read. While I try to explore authors that I have not read, this book is beyond bad. Implausible events made even worse by the author's total lack of detail to the action. I did not mind the format, but the lack of content made me actually laugh at some parts that were supposed to be serious.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love Matthew Reilly but this book really flopped for me. Really weird format and just not that great of detail. I didn't really get a good feeling for the characters and made it hard to care if they made it out alive or not. His other books are great but this one is my least favorite.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Don't get me wrong, I love Reillys' other books. They are fast-paced and his earlier books had more character developement than the recent one. But this book just didn't click on all cylinders like the other books. For one the format was really weird. You would be really flowing and he would but a weird break in the writing. Either by doing someting like..... .....this where he would put in the (....) I can kind of see it like a suspenseful ending to a bad mystery movie. And the killer is.... .....John Doe. It just didn't work for me and kind of took me out of the book, which is good from other aspects but the format was just too weird for me to really enjoy it. But I would liket to say that all his other books are amazing, if you like lots of action, and would highly recommend them to anyone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I decided to read this author because of a reference in a book by Jeremy Robinson. While this book was fast-paced, most of it was in technical over-description and the action sequences were redundant. The writing was fair but I found the overabundance of short, choppy sentences and the overuse of hyphens to be annoying. All in all, this book was quite amateurish when compared to masters like James Rollins and Jeremy Robinson. I will probably read the series anyway since I bought them all together but I am not too happy about it. Definitely not a book I would recommend, especially for a serious reader. Stephanie Clanhan
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
bookwormJI More than 1 year ago
A fantastic adventure awaits you when you read this book. Intricate details are perfect for picturing the many scenes. Loved the illustrations. Highly recommend this one. You won't be disappointed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great, fun read. I love all Reilly's books and characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So far I love this book. If you want a thriller get this book! But this is also the first time he is not a step ahead of me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the 1st book in the trilogy of history, adventure,band a whole lot of BAD guys who want to end the world. The only hope is a little girl with a huge giftvto stop it. Fast paced page turning action. You wont put it down. So make some time and enjoy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago