Two things you can expect from any James Rollins book: non-stop thrills and really cool science that sounds like science fiction, but is really based on fact. The Devil Colony is no exception, and after two whole years, I’m just happy to spend a few hours again with the Sigma Force team. I love Sigma Force — secret agents with Sheldon Cooper IQs, they’re literally kick-ass nerds. That means that while they’re racing after bad guys action movie style, the problems they try to solve are just as much intellectual challenges as physical ones. It’s Michael Crichton on steroids, and a nerdy adrenaline rush all the way through.
The main plot of Devil Colony is one that, I admit, didn’t really draw me at first: the history of America is based on a lie perpetuated by the Founding Fathers and involving Mormonism. Rollins writes it well, with lots of clues to keep you guessing, and Da Vinci Code-style revelations that call into question commonly accepted beliefs about the history of America. Perhaps it’s just that I’m not American, nor am I that familiar with American history regarding the Founding Fathers. So the revelations didn’t really make gasp the way Dan Brown’s did in Da Vinci Code, where I contrasted it to everything I’d learned in Catholic school. Thankfully, however, Rollins isn’t as wordy as Brown was when discussing all the historical details. Plus, the action is vintage Rollins, and even I was swept along by the mystery and the action.
Call me a nerd, but the part that really interested me in Devil Colony was the bit about nanotechnology. I love how Rollins integrated such contemporary technology, and one I usually associate with futuristic thrillers, with the historical mystery. My main disappointment was that the scientists who were working with Sigma in exploring the impact of this nanotechnology weren’t given more scenes; I would’ve loved to read more about them, and perhaps find out what, if anything, the Founding Fathers thought of nanotechnology.
I also love how Rollins explored more of the Sigma members’ personal lives in Devil Colony. Monk is definitely one of my favourite characters, and I love seeing him in expectant father mode. Gray’s parent issues felt very real, and I love seeing Seichan’s softer, sympathetic side in dealing with him. The book ends with a bit of a surprise twist promising a future plot thread regarding Sigma and the Guild, which is exciting in itself, but honestly, I’m even more excited to see how Gray deals with what has happened in this book and what happens to Monk as a father.
Devil Colony isn’t my favourite Rollins book, but it’s definitely an exciting read. I love it, and I already can’t wait for the next Sigma adventure!