Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Joshua Stone by James Barney #Book Review

The Joshua Stone

by James Barney

on Tour October 8 - Nov 30th

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller/Suspense Published by: William Morrow Paperbacks Publication Date: 10/8/2013 Number of Pages: 416 ISBN: 9780062021397 Purchase Links: The Joshua Stone


Some secrets belong to the past. Others refuse to stay there . . . In 1959, in an underground laboratory in a remote region of West Virginia, a secret government experiment went terribly awry. Half a dozen scientists mysteriously disappeared, and all subsequent efforts to rescue them failed. In desperation, President Eisenhower ordered the lab sealed shut and all records of its existence destroyed. Now, fifty-four years later, something from the lab has emerged. When mysterious events begin occurring along the New River Valley in West Virginia, government agents Mike Califano and Ana Thorne are sent to investigate. What they discover will shake the foundations of science and religion and put both agents in the crosshairs of a deadly, worldwide conspiracy. A powerful and mysterious force has been unleashed, and it's about to fall into the wrong hands. To prevent a global catastrophe, Califano and Thorne must work together to solve a biblical mystery that has confounded scholars for centuries. And they must do so quickly, before time runs out . . . forever.


A  great thriller The Joshua Stone is a intense read. A government experiment gone wrong 50 years later 2 Mysterious men show up in town and two government agents to investigate, a intense story slowly unfolds centering around the Joshua Stone. Part Science part biblical this book is absolutely fascinating as well as intense.This is the first book I have read by James Barney and  look forward to reading more from this author.

Read an excerpt:

PROLOGUE Thurmond, West Virginia October 5, 1959 IT was time. Dr. Franz Holzberg stood at the security desk of the Thurmond National Laboratory and waited patiently for the guard to buzz him through the heavy steel door that provided access to the lab. Funny, he thought as he waited. They don’t even know what they’re guarding. He shook his head and considered that thought for a moment. If they only knew . . . A second later, the door opened with a loud buzz, and Holzberg stepped into a steel enclosure about five feet square and seven feet tall. He turned to face the guard and pulled a chain-link safety gate across the opening. “Ready?” asked the guard. Holzberg nodded, and the compartment in which he stood suddenly lurched downward and began its long descent toward the laboratory spaces, nine hundred feet below the ground. Two minutes later, the elevator shuddered to a halt, and Dr. Holzberg exited into a wide, empty passageway, about twenty feet across and two hundred feet long. The cracked, concrete floor was sparsely illuminated by overhead industrial lighting. A pair of rusty trolley rails ran down the middle of the corridor—a remnant of the mining operations that had once taken place there decades earlier. Holzberg took a deep breath and savored the pungent smell of sulfur and stagnant water. After three long years of working on this project, he actually felt more at home underground than in the charmless cinder-block rambler that the government had provided for him “up top,” in Thurmond. He started off toward the laboratory at the end of the corridor, his footsteps echoing loudly throughout the vast space. As he walked, the protocol for Experiment TNL-213 streamed through his mind for the thousandth time. Today is the day, he reminded himself, allowing just the faintest of smiles. Today, God would heed his command. Just as God heeded Joshua’s command at Gibeon. Holzberg passed through the laboratory’s heavy security door and entered a long, rectangular room resembling a tunnel, with unpainted cement walls, ceiling, and floor. The middle of the room was dominated by a large pool of water, twenty by thirty feet across and thirty feet deep, with a steel catwalk extending across it. A sturdy steel railing circumscribed the edge of the pool. Overhead, four long rows of incandescent bulbs illuminated the entire room with bright, white light. High up on the walls, thick, multicolored bundles of wires and cables snaked like garlands across sturdy brackets, with smaller bundles dropping down at uneven intervals to various lab equipment and workstations around the room. Holzberg spotted four technicians in white lab coats busily preparing the lab for the upcoming experiment. He acknowledged them with a nod and then quickly made his way to an elevated control room overlooking the pool. He entered without knocking and greeted the room’s sole occupant, a bespectacled man in a white lab coat. “Good morning, Irwin,” said Holzberg in a thick German accent. “How are the modifications coming along?” Dr. Irwin Michelson swiveled on his stool. He was a wiry man in his midthirties, with disheveled black hair and a two-day- old beard. He pushed his glasses up on his nose. “They’re done,” he said. “Done? You’ve tested it?” “We changed out the power supply, like you suggested, and increased the cooling flow to two hundred gallons per minute. We tested it last night and were able to generate a ninety tesla pulse for twenty-five seconds with no overheating. We probably could go higher if we needed to.” “Good. And the sensors and transducers?” “All set.” Holzberg nodded appreciatively to his tireless assistant. “Sehr gut. Then let’s proceed.” It took nearly three hours for Holzberg, Michelson, and their team of four technicians to complete the exhaustive checklist for TNL-213. This experiment had taken three years to plan and had required millions of dollars in upgrades and modifications to the lab. Nothing would be left to chance today. By early afternoon they’d finished their thorough inspection of the equipment. They’d checked, double-checked, and triple-checked each of the hundreds of valves, levers, and switches associated with the lab’s “swimming pool” test rig. Everything was positioned according to a detailed test protocol that Dr. Holzberg carried in a thick binder prominently marked top secret—winter solstice. Michelson knelt on the steel catwalk that bridged the 160,000-gallon pool of water and carefully inspected a rectangular steel chamber that was suspended above the water by four thick cables. Numerous electrical sensors were welded to the exterior of this chamber, and a rainbow of waterproof wires radiated out from it, coiling upward toward a thick, retractable wiring harness above the catwalk. “Transducers are secure,” Michelson said over his shoulder. “Good,” said Holzberg from the railing. He made a checkmark in his notebook and read the next step of the protocol aloud. “Mount the seed.” Michelson stood and turned slowly to face his mentor. “So it’s time?” Holzberg nodded. Michelson dragged a hand over his unshaven face and cracked a smile. “God, this . . . this is incredible.” He was barely able to contain his excitement. “This’ll give us a whole new understanding of the universe.” “Perhaps,” said Holzberg. “Right, perhaps. And perhaps the Nobel Prize, too.” “No,” said Holzberg firmly, his expression suddenly turning dark. “But . . . if this works, we could publish our findings. By then the government—” “Irwin, no. We’ve had this discussion before.” Michelson sighed and looked deflated. “Right, I know. Not until the world is ready.” Holzberg inched closer to his protégé. “Irwin, this is a responsibility you must accept. Einstein himself was confounded by this material.” “Einstein was overrated,” Michelson mumbled. “Perhaps. But that does not change the fact that we have been entrusted with something very special here. We must study and solve it. Until we do, it is simply too dangerous to expose to the world. That is our burden. Do you understand?” Michelson nodded sheepishly. Holzberg patted his younger colleague’s shoulder. “Good. Now, let’s get the seed.” The two men made their way to the far end of the room, where a circular vault was mounted flush with the cement wall. The vault door was protected by a bank-grade, dual-combination lock with twin tumblers. “Ready?” Holzberg asked. Michelson nodded. One after the other, the two men turned the pair of dials on the vault door four times each, alternating clockwise and counterclockwise. When the last of the eight numbers had been entered, Michelson pulled down hard on the heavy handle in the center of the door, and the vault opened with a metallic ka-chunk. He swung the door open slowly, and, as he did, the vault’s lights flickered, illuminating the interior with an ethereal blue light. There was only one object in the vault: a clear glass cylinder about eight inches high and four inches in diameter housing an irregular black clump about the size of a golf ball. “The seed,” Holzberg whispered as he reached inside and retrieved the cylinder, cradling it carefully in both hands. He held it up to the light and peered inside. “Your secrets unfold today.” Thirty minutes later, with the seed securely mounted in its special test chamber, and the chamber lowered deep into the pool, the two scientists returned to the control room for their final preparations. “Transducer twenty-one?” said Holzberg, reading aloud from the test protocol. Michelson pressed a button on the complex control panel and verified that transducer 21 was providing an appropriate signal. “Check.” “Transducer twenty-two?” Michelson repeated the procedure for transducer 22. “Check.” “That’s it then,” said Holzberg, turning to a new page in his notebook. “We’re ready.” He checked his watch, which indicated 4:15 p.m. Then he picked up a microphone that was attached to the control panel by a long wire. “Gentlemen,” he announced over the lab’s PA system. “We are ready to commence experiment 213. Please take your positions.” In the lab space below, the four technicians quickly took up positions at their various workstations. One after another, they gave the thumbs-up signal that they were ready. “Energize the steady-field magnet,” announced Holzberg. A loud, steady hum suddenly filled the lab, followed by the sound of rotating equipment slowly whirring to life. Several seconds later, Michelson quietly reported over his shoulder that the steady-field magnet was energized and warming up. “Remember,” Holzberg said, “bring it up slowly.” Michelson nodded. “We’re at thirteen teslas and rising,” he said, his attention focused on a circular dial on the control panel. “And the cooling water outlet temperature?” Michelson glanced at another gauge. “Sixty-two

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a great read! So glad you enjoyed it. Very nice review and post. THank you for introducing it.