Book Reviews of Decipher

Decipher
Decipher
Author: Stel Pavlou
PBS Market Price: $7.59 or $3.69+1 credit
ISBN-13: 9780312996437
ISBN-10: 0312996438
Publication Date: 2/1/2005
Pages: 528
Rating:
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 145

3.5 stars, based on 145 ratings
Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

49 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Decipher on + 80 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
A very enjoyable book. While it has some scientific jargon (causing those who don't know much about geology and physics to reread a paragraph or two just to get an basic understanding)this book is one of the most entertaining I've read in a while. Of course, I may be biased because I've always loved the legend of Atlantis. I would recommend this book to any who like science and end of the world novels.
reviewed Decipher on + 58 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
I guess I really liked this one, b/c I was going to post it earlier, then decided I wanted ot read it again before I did.
I love all the Crichton books and this comes very close to his kind of writing, science and fiction.
It was a definite "I don't want to do housework b/c I HAVE to finish this book first" kind of read!
reviewed Decipher on + 11 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
I can see this one on the big screen, but it'd be one huge CGI challenge. Needs a BIG stage. Surprisingly good book. The math and crypto dialog gets pretty involved and kinda fuzzy around the edges. But, it's got some good characters, well drawn. Quirky scientists...imagine that! By the end, you'll likely decide it was worth the read. Bogs down in a couple places, but as I said above, the BIGNESS of the last third of the book really does invite a screenplay.
reviewed Decipher on + 264 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
wow! Great book! I couldn't put it down!
reviewed Decipher on + 192 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
This book rocked! It is a thick book and took me a few days to read it, but I really enjoyed it! I am really surprised that this book hasn't been turned into an action movie. well written, with neat ideas and it ties it all up in the end neatly.
reviewed Decipher on + 42 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
I would call this asci-fi thriller. I really did not want to take time for anything except reading. Thoroughly enjoyed.
reviewed Decipher on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
As a reader with a bit of a science background coupled with an interest in linguistics, I found this book to be a very interesting read. I enjoy reading scientific "what if" scenarios, and I appreciated the bibliography at the back. This book strings together a multitude of theoretical science, attaches a lot of mysticism, and connects it all through a cryptographic puzzle which I found entertaining. There are several points where you have to suspend belief (it IS a work of fiction, after all), but overall I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys sci-fi along the vein of Crichton. I would also recommend it to anyone who enjoys the idea that ancient mythology is really a puzzle to be figured out by modern man, along the lines of the Da Vinci Code. There were some weaknesses in the plot and I never could figure out why they dragged the 19 year old college student all over the place with them, but overall it was a fun read. I look forward to his next book!
reviewed Decipher on + 32 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This is a very suspenseful--not to mention terrifying--story of what might take place worldwide if the lost city of Atlantis were to be found; the consequences, one might say, of decoding the language of that civilization so that humans may enter Atlantis. Whether one believes that there ever actually was a city called Atlantis or not, it is quite easy to suspend any skepticism the further one goes into the story. By the last chapter, I was in a small panic to find out what would take place with the hapless scientists who in fact *did* crack the code. It was a great surprise, and certainly not a pleasant one in any way. Definitely not a "and they lived happily ever after" ending, but one that fit the story in a most decisively solid way.
reviewed Decipher on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I really liked it! I liked the science behind it and the story wasn't that bad. A little far fetched perhaps, but a great read none the less. The characters are in my opinion developed enough to fit perfectly in the content of the story.

I particularly enjoy all the technical data and science in the book. Considering that this mostly the type of genre that I read, I understood it and like the fact that the science stays the same (light travels at the same speed regardless of the author). I can also appreciate all the research that was done for this book. The extensive bibliography is the icing on the cake! I will definitely continue to read more of Stel Pavlous work.
reviewed Decipher on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This book was very interesting and a good story. It was very, very technically detailed which required some re-reading of information on my part to understand. The comparasions of stories and religious witing I found to be interesting. I recommend this book. The story was good and I feel as if I learned new things!
reviewed Decipher on + 200 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
excellent book incorporating the themes of the pyramids, atlantis and the destruction of civilization. a fast-paced read of aslmost 600 pages.
reviewed Decipher on + 16 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
WONDERFUL! WONDERFUL! WONDERFUL! Was a little wordy but explained most things in lamens terms to make it understandable.
reviewed Decipher on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
One of my favorite books ever.
This is one wild roller coaster read. I kept stopping and looking things up on the internet to see if what he was writing was true. Even though this book is a work of fiction it has a lot of real things in it. I have recommended this book to several people and some just cannot get thru it because of all of the termanology. I loved it.
reviewed Decipher on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
The story is not lacking for adventure, drama, technical exposition, scientific lecture, and ethnological detail...though the fact it occurs on virtually every page can get a little tedious. Still, it a book most readers of techo-thrillers are almost certainly (at 575 pages) willing to wade through.
reviewed Decipher on + 179 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
In a frozen wasteland near the Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica, a world-weary team of oil drillers jubilantly believes that it has located a major strike. Instead of black gold, however, the men discover a bizarre cluster of rocks with unnatural markings similar to ancient hieroglyphs. Shortly afterward, these enigmatic rocks begin to appear in seemingly unrelated sites across the globe, including the Amazon River and an underground chamber beneath the Sphinx. A crackerjack squad of the world's premier geocryptologists soon determines that the stones are actually composed of carbon 60, a superior energy source previously unknown to modern science. From this point, the plot machinations are revved into overdrive with all the subtlety of an avalanche. Solar flares, Atlantis, ancient Mayan prophecies, the Book of Revelations, and unexplained worldwide cataclysms are tossed into the mix, creating enough fringe ideas to make an Art Bell radio show listener drool.
reviewed Decipher on + 218 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Good book, though a little hard to follow at times. Still, an interesting read that was hard to put down.
reviewed Decipher on + 131 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
great book. about the worlds impending demise if we do not figure out a way to unlock the mysterious just found Atlantis,some scientific jargon,but a great read.long though.
reviewed Decipher on + 19 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Very well written, writer did his research extremely well and provided an interesting insight into a possible future.
reviewed Decipher on + 26 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I love the Atlantis myth and will read pretty much anything on it, but this one was just ridiculous. I hated the characters because each and every one of them new everything. Didn't matter what it was, they new it all. I felt like I was in a college lecture each time a character spoke. The author did extensive research, so much so that it ruined the book for me. Something like this I want to use my imagination, not be lectured. This was easily 200 pages too long. I got lost in thought so many time trying to take in all the information and understand the technical babble it took nearly a month to finish it. Completely out there as far as the story goes. I took this author off my wishlist as I just didn't find him an enjoyable writer.
reviewed Decipher on + 7 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
If you love conspiracies, you'll love this book. There's a ticking timer that's been known for ages, but it's been read wrong. Read about these people trying to put together ancient clues to save themselves.
reviewed Decipher on + 228 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
A fantastic book requiring immense amount of research. Our scientist heros must find out what new coded crystals have to do with the impending natural disaster of the sun killing everyone on earth!!! Only for the closet scientist readers out there. Its a book you really have to read twice to absorb all the research.
reviewed Decipher on
Great story. Excellently researched and written book.
reviewed Decipher on + 636 more book reviews
Wow! This was an absolutely fascinating book!! It had all sorts of interesting facts and a great premise about Atlantis. And it certainly had a great sense of adventure and suspense. It was like reading an action movie! Now, of course, that goes with the genre that characters were more like caricatures than people... and not every little bit of the great mystery (like what would seem like the more interesting bits) was included. For all the historical background and explanation, the book was firmly rooted in the present (well, actually the future - 2012), and little to do with the heydey of Atlantis in the past... And much like _The Swarm_ by Frank Schatzing, there were entire sections that were little more than "information dumps" but they were interesting and relevant to the story. I found the whole thing to be engrossing, but I can see how this format would not be to everyone's liking. If you can't go along for the ride, don't bother... I wouldn't recommend this to everyone I knew as just a terrific piece of literature, but it sure is exciting and I really enjoyed it and know people who will definitely be borrowing my copy!
reviewed Decipher on + 18 more book reviews
Scientists perform impossibly huge intellectual leaps of reasoning in astonishingly tight timeframes to discover Atlantis, decrypt messages from lost alien civilizations, create a quantum physics Grand Unified Theory, while simultaneously fighting nuclear WW3 against the Chinese and saving the planet and all life on it from the sun going supernova. Oh, and don't forget the romantic intrigues. All in a weeks work. Oh, too bad about Mercury, Venus, and the Moon.

Gimme a break.

Stooooopid plot, disjointed sophomoric writing, unbelievable almost from page 1.
Pavlou, you're off my list.
reviewed Decipher on + 16 more book reviews
Good book,interesting story line, but a lot of detail.
reviewed Decipher on + 306 more book reviews
I read this pretty quickly, it had some good characters in it and held my interest through the whole thing.
reviewed Decipher on + 7 more book reviews
This book has taken me a long time to read. The author did extensive research ton say the least, but it feels more like a science lesson than a story. Most of the book is just a bunch of techno babble and doesn't really get going until the later half of the book.
reviewed Decipher on
I am an avid reader. Rarely do I start reading a book and not finish it. I made it through 93 pages of this literary quagmire before I had to stop. The author goes out of his way to offend those of religious inclination in the first chapter and then fills the pages with little more than scientific and technical jargon. He brings up every half-baked conspiracy and fringe psuedo-scientific theory, ala "Chariot of the Gods", touting it as 'research'. The lead character is a one-dimensional know-it-all and the plot is barely discernable. Reading this book was so tedious, I just couldn't bring myself to waste one more minute. I couldn't even care enough to skip to the end to find out what happens. Skip this stinker!!!!!!
reviewed Decipher on + 370 more book reviews
This book should have been marked as science fiction, since that's what it was when it was written (2004). It's a real thriller and genuine science fiction as well. Fans of Coast to Coast AM will enjoy many threads in the book as mysteries discussed on the program play a part in the book - Atlantis, Antarctica, Ancient Egypt, sun cycles, political rivalries, conspiracies, ancient legends and civilizations. In addition, it is quite well written; the author has a nice turn of phrase. I would recommend it to sf and thriller fans.
reviewed Decipher on + 33 more book reviews
This is a fascinating book, once I started reading it I had a hard time putting it down.
reviewed Decipher on + 223 more book reviews
Excellent book. Writer did good job with characters and plot.
reviewed Decipher on + 459 more book reviews
FROM THE PUBLISHER

"There is a signal emanating from deep within the ice of Antarctica. Atlantis has awoken. Ancient monuments all over the world - from the pyramids of Egypt and Mexico to the sacred sites of China - are reacting to a brewing crisis not of this earth, but from somewhere out in the solar system. The monuments are connecting to each other through the oceans, using low-frequency sound waves to create an ancient network. The earth is thrown into a panic, for it seems that the signals coming from Atlantis are a prelude to something much greater. Could it be that the entire city of Atlantis is, in fact, a giant ancient machine? And to what end? For what purpose?" It is the year 2012, the same year Mayan belief prophesized the end of the world. Two armies, American and Chinese, stand on the brink of war for the control of the most potent force ever known to man - the secrets of Atlantis. Secrets that are encoded in crystal shards retrieved from the sunken city. Secrets that mankind has had twelve thousand years to decipher...but which will now destroy the world within one week.
reviewed Decipher on + 92 more book reviews
Quick, tight End of the World thriller.
reviewed Decipher on + 47 more book reviews
exciting, thrilling adventure
reviewed Decipher on + 11 more book reviews
Atlantis is found, and "...a worldwide cataclysm of biblical proportions begins."
reviewed Decipher on + 3 more book reviews
Excellent book, fast paced, engaging
reviewed Decipher on + 160 more book reviews
For 12000 years the message has been buried. It is the meaning of civilization and its end. Very good book.
reviewed Decipher on + 370 more book reviews
I'm about halfway through the book - it's a substantial read - and I am fascinated by how the author has brought so many threads together for this story. As a thriller it's a real page turner, but what I like about it is that it seems to be a return to real science fiction, with big words and everything. This is not park yer brains action adventure; I am having to pay very close attention to the explanations in it. I'm hoping this author can keep the high level going.

That said, as some have noted, this is not literary fiction (though the prose level is quite good); the characters are not well rounded, but there's so much else going on I almost don't want him to waste space on characterization. I could, however, do with a list of characters and what their specialty is.
reviewed Decipher on + 11 more book reviews
Great action-packed book. Slight sci-fi thread that does not present itself into the description.
reviewed Decipher on + 76 more book reviews
MANKIND HAS HAD 12,000 YEARS TO DECIPHER THE MESSAGE,
WE HAVE ONE WEEK LEFT....

There is a signal emanating from deep within the ice of Antarctica. Atlantis has awoken. Ancient monuments all over the worlds from the Pyramids of Giza, to Mexico to the ancient sites of China are reacting...to a brewing crisis not of this earth, but somewhere out in the solar system. Connecting to each other through the oceans. Using low frequency sound waves to create an ancient network. The earth is thrown into panic stations. For it seems that the signals emanating from Atlantis are a prelude to something much greater. Could it be that the entire city is in fact one giant ancient machine? And to what end? For what purpose?

It is the year 2012, the same year Mayan belief prophesised the end of the world. Two armies, American and Chinese stand on the brink of war for the control of the most potent force ever known to man. The secrets of Atlantis. Secrets which are encoded in crystal shards retrieved from the sunken city. Secrets which Mankind has had twelve thousand years to decipher...but which will now destroy it within one week.
reviewed Decipher on + 4 more book reviews
For 12,000 years Atlantis and its secrets have been buried. The world is rapidly coming to an end. Scientists rush to unlock the secrets of Atlantis and figure out whether Atlantis is friend or foe. I really enjoyed this book.
reviewed Decipher on
"A Rocketing Adventure" Philadelphia Inquirer

Big Read with exciting adventure.
reviewed Decipher on + 218 more book reviews
For 12,000 years, the message has been buried. It is the meaning of civilization--and its end...In a frozen Antarctic wasteland, in the depths of the Amazon River, in a chamber beneath the ruins of the Sphinx, something has surfaced: a cluster of crystalline artifacts composed of an energy source unknown to modern science and inscribed with ancient hieroglyphs. Between them a strange signal courses through the oceans, emanating from a source that has stunned mankind. The lost city of Atlantis has been found. Now, 2 of the world's most powerful armies stand on the brink of war to gain control of the most powerful force known to modern man. But a group of scientists struggling to decode the message of the primeval network fears that it is already too late. Solar fires ignite the surface of the earth, and a worldwide cataclysm of biblical proportions begins. Now as Atlantis rises, so do its secrets--along with a terrifying prophecy that is coming true.
reviewed Decipher on + 2 more book reviews
Couldn't put the book down.
reviewed Decipher on + 11 more book reviews
In a Frozen Antarctic wasteland, in the depths of the Amazon River, in a chamber beneath the ruins of the Sphinx, something has surfaced: a cluster of crystalline artifacts composed of an energy source unkown to modern science and inscribed with ancient hieroglyphs. Between them a strange signal courses through the oceans, emanating from a source that has stunned mankind. The lost city of Atlantis has been found. It is the meaning of Civilization- Now, two of the world's most powerful armies stand on the brink of war to gain control of the most powerful force known to modern man. But a group of scientists struggling to decode the message of the primeval netweork fears that it is already too late.
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Very technical
reviewed Decipher on + 33 more book reviews
Ok, this book was all over the place and while I enjoy learning a bit of new information it seems like the author tried to tie together EVERYTHING on earth into a cohesive story and that just isn't really possible - though he did try very hard, things were just too confusing to me most of the time. Add in the fact that his characters weren't very developed, merely caricatures of stereotypes who mostly interacted by giving mini-lectures to each other and it all makes for a choppy book. It seems like things would have been better either leaving out some info or expanding it even further... but that's just my opinion... One funny thing, a heck of a lot of his characters had vast portions of Revelations memorized, even though they weren't "Christian" just one of the things that struck me as odd.
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From back cover...
For 12,000 years this message has been buried.
In a frozen Antarctic wasteland, in the depths of the Amazon River, in a chamber beneath the ruins of the sphinx, something has surfaced: a cluster of crystalline artifacts composed of an energy source unknown to modern science and inscribed with ancient hieroglyphs. Between them a strange signal courses through the oceans, emanating from a source that has stunned mankind. The lost city of Atlantis has been found.
reviewed Decipher on + 24 more book reviews
Love love love this book! It's chock full of interesting characters and exciting events. I definately recommend it.:)