The Orichalcum Rod

Fiction - Thriller - General
142 Pages
Reviewed on 03/17/2019
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Jessica Barbosa for Readers' Favorite

In Travis Pearson’s The Orichalcum Rod, two couples head to a small isolated village with intentions to explore newly discovered ancient archaeological sites. Richard Carson and his wife Kaylie are newlyweds expecting their honeymoon to be a vacation of a lifetime, an exciting adventure to tell their families when they get back. However, as they head towards their destination, Richard grows concerned at the absence of towns and lack of civilization. He feels wary about the stilted interactions with the personnel especially when he meets Adonis, the village ruler and their guide, and sees the way he looks at Kaylie. When they arrive at the hamlet, they meet another couple, the McCourts, Charles and Jenna, whose neutral expressions and slightly defiant tendencies against the small village’s local customs are a mystery in themselves.

Travis Pearson serves readers with an intriguing and unique setting in The Orichalcum Rod. His writing took me through interesting turns as the story progressed. Pearson spins an intricate and engaging plot that pulled me deeper in with every page turned and every mystery uncovered. Reading the book was like collecting puzzle pieces that slowly started to come together with every chapter I finished. I loved how Pearson took the characters to a remote village with no guarantee of outside help and let them figure out a way to save themselves. The action and constant threat of danger around the characters had me on the edge of my seat. I loved the characters too. Charles’ determination to find his niece, Jenna’s strength and defiance, Kaylie’s enthusiasm, and Richard’s unassuming appearance that made everyone he met underestimate him really pulled the whole story together. Richard, or Rex, and his tendency to over-analyze problems and social interactions in their situation proved to be their saving grace in the end and I couldn’t be happier with how cleanly the loose ends were tied up. This book kept me intrigued and hooked until the very end; truly amazing.

Jack Magnus

The Orichalcum Rod is an adventure-fantasy thriller novel written by Travis Pearson. Richard and Kaylie Carson were setting off on a honeymoon that promised excitement, adventure and what Kaylie described as “the vacation of a lifetime.” They had eschewed the typical honeymoon on golden sands, where honeymooners lounged on deck chairs by day and partied in clubs by night, for something rather different. They would be partaking in an archaeological dig that would give them front row seats to the process of discovering ancient civilizations. It would be a chance to experience something that was usually only dreamed about. They were excited as they set out on the first leg of the journey. Each transfer, however, seemed to heighten the couple’s reservations about their adventure. The final single-engine plane that would take them to their destination made them seriously wonder. The pilot, who seemed reluctant to even speak with them, was unwashed, and his plane reeked of body odor. The landing was terrifying, and what had begun as a grand adventure had left Richard stressed and Kaylie in tears. But their ordeal had only just begun.

Travis Pearson’s The Orichalcum Rod is a fast-paced and exciting tale about a honeymoon gone horribly awry. Pearson’s characters are well defined and credible, and his plot is filled with twists and turns that keep the reader on edge and guessing. I especially enjoyed reading about Richard’s embarkation into martial arts as a teen and his relationship with his older cousin, and mentor, Mike. Watching Richard and Kaylie interact with their host, the enigmatic and domineering Adonis, and take stock of the situation in which they find themselves is quite entertaining, and seeing Richard take on the name of Rex and find his inner warrior is marvelous. The Orichalcum Rod is highly recommended.

Viga Boland

It’s not unusual for today’s newlyweds to want to do things differently and when it comes to honeymoons, why settle for something as ordinary as a Caribbean resort or cruise, or even a European holiday? That’s how Richard Carson and his new wife Kaylie end up in a remote, jungle-like setting with primitive facilities in The Orichalcum Rod by Travis Pearson. They look forward to the opportunity to explore an ancient, yet advanced civilization, but what they find exceeds all expectations and nearly costs them their lives.

Perhaps you have no idea, as I didn’t, what “orichalcum” is? It is, essentially, a mixture of copper and zinc, with small traces of nickel and iron. In a 2015 news item, it was reported that “archaeologists had recently recovered 39 ingots of orichalcum from a 2,600-year-old shipwreck, found ten feet underwater off the coast of Sicily, near the town of Gela.” Could this be close to the location where the newlyweds encounter Adonis, a handsome man of outstanding size and strength who conducts digs into what he claims are the ruins of Atlantis, but has a far more sinister reason for luring beautiful young women and their husbands to his isolated village? As Richard begins, with the help of another couple, to uncover the truth about what really goes on in Adonis’ realm, Richard finds himself in a cave where the mystical and magical orichalcum rod may end up being their only means of protection and a final chance of freedom for all the other victims trapped by Adonis’ nefarious scheme. It’s a wild tale that will tease your imagination while sending a slight chill up your spine.

Travis Pearson is what I loosely term a ‘sparse’ writer, meaning he doesn’t bog you down with lots of descriptive details or spend a long time getting the action off the ground. To those who want a short, quick read, this is an attractive style, even though it sometimes becomes a lot more tell than show. Despite that, while we might not remember the characters a month after we read the book, we will most likely remember the story, and forever wonder if ancient Atlantis was lost because of mankind’s advances or if indeed it ever existed in the first place!

K.C. Finn

The Orichalcum Rod is a work of thrilling adventure fiction penned by author Travis Pearson. A short sharp adventure novella with a disastrous and exotic atmosphere, the action centres around a holiday gone wrong for newlywed couple Richard and Kaylie Carson. At first the pair thinks that their explorer-style honeymoon amongst ancient ruins and exotic jungles will be a fun and cultural experience, but things turn sour very quickly as the village hamlet they’re staying in is not what it seems. Tribal leader Adonis holds the dark secrets of his community close to his chest, and soon Richard finds himself on a mission to return himself and Kaylie to safety at all costs.

This is an unusual and successful novella that moves at a really exciting pace. The culture shock atmosphere which author Travis Pearson creates begins as a kind of natural paranoia that the honeymoon couple try to shrug off, and the impending sense of doom grows really well as the reality of their situation sinks in. Claustrophobic and dangerous in places, this is a truly thrilling read which effectively captures so many tense moments of the human experience. I particularly liked the portrayal of Richard as a realistic action hero spurred on by the determination to save his wife from the attentions of the villainous Adonis, but I was pleased that Kaylie wasn’t just a damsel either. Overall, with its engaging character development, strong plot line and fantastic atmospheric writing, I would highly recommend The Orichalcum Rod to all readers who enjoy a tense exotic adventure.

Philip LaRose

If you have read any of the other Travis Pearson's science fiction novels, you will have come to expect something different and unusual. These are not the same characters as from his previous books so be prepared to be amazed at the new direction in this story line. The hero in this novel is not the super strength Marvel type characters in his other books, but an every day guy that defeats his adversary using his martial arts skills with the help of a special device called an Orichalcum Rod. I will not go into the plot of the story as other reviewers did, you can read their reviews for that. However, after reading other reviews I agree with a lot of the praise that had for it. As such, one has to wonder where Pearson gets some of the ideas that he writes about. Once again he has devised a plot that intertwines reality and fiction that does not disappoint. This is another fast read with a happy ending, but after you put it down, you wish he had taken it a little bit further.

Brandon Steury

The Orichalcum Rod is an exciting adventure in the spirit of Louis L'Amour and Indiana Jones. Fast moving and full of mystery, legend, and action, it will make you smile and cheer for its humble hero. This novel will take you away from the everyday on an journey to a colorful place and an epic struggle between right and wrong!

Michael Stoll

I have read 3 of Travis Pearsons books so far and he is fast becomimg my favorite author. Without giving too much away I think Orichalcum Rod has broad appeal. . . Its an adventure tale that has people traveling to a mystical place far from civilization . The characters and some 9f their back stories offer insights into the actions they take. A great story of good and evil that you dont instantly see coming . I also loved the ending