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Summary

In 2018, Canadian archaeologist Ron Jackson makes a mind-boggling discovery in Antarctica - right before disappearing without a trace, leaving behind only his controversial theory that humans have lived on Earth far, far longer than we think they have.

Decades later, in 2042, when Jackson's wife dies under mysterious circumstances, an unlikely pair of investigators, Agatha Devenworth and Pano Hofer, begin investigating whether her death might be connected to Jackson's disappearance. What exactly was it he found before he vanished? Why is the Human Foundation, a hyper-powerful business empire built on an endless series of game-changing inventions it has been rolling out, one after another, for over 20 years, trying to hide the truth from the two investigators?

And what could it possibly have to do with the first manned mission to Mars, which ended in disaster leaving countless conspiracy theories in its wake?

©2021 Joshua T. Calvert (P)2021 Podium Audio

Critic reviews

"An intriguing, character-driven mystery/thriller with 'science-fictional awe and' outer-space trappings." (Kirkus Reviews)

"Joshua T. Calvert has a gift for making nail-biting science fiction that you can't put down. Get ready for some sleepless nights!" (M.A. Rothman, USA Today best-selling author)

What listeners say about The Fossil

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Never has a book taken so long to do so little

I finished this book out of sheer bloody-mindedness. The story is so slow it’s virtually pedestrian. The low, quiet style of the narrator is unengaging and failed to inject any excitement into the already tectonic pace of the story, which takes about 20 hours to get from wanting to go to Mars to going to Mars, with incredibly little of interest going on in between.

Avoid.

1 person found this helpful

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wow. just wow!

I was sceptical getting this as it has few reviews and some said it was slow. But I love Jonathan Davis narration from the Olan Thorenson Anyar books so I decided to give it a go. And boy am I glad I did!!!! yes the narrative was excellent, but I expected that... but the story too! it was in no way slow. it gripped me to the end, a real edged of seat job. well thought-out and cunningly comes together for a nice tie up at the end. I'm literally going to get book 2 now, can't wait.

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  • Kw4311
  • 18-01-22

Good story!

This is a pretty okay book! The characters are likable and the plot is good. It seems that the circumstances are pretty believable in the context of a science fiction book.

I do have to mention two issues that the editors should have spotted. Mogadishu is in Somalia. In the book some of the characters land "in Sudan, just outside of Mogadishu." Somalia is separated from Sudan by Ethiopia, a large-ish country, so it is not even close. Then some of the action takes place in Antarctica where the editors missed another. There is mention of the Arctic Ocean which is at the North Pole, not surrounding Antarctica. It should have been the Antarctic Ocean, or Southern Ocean. But hey, you can't catch everything!

12 people found this helpful

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  • Susan
  • 17-09-21

Intriguing story

I found this book to be have an interesting and intriguing story. It has 3 timelines, that are simple to follow. They all tie into one discovery to uncover secrets to an ancient civilization.
The main characters lives were nicely developed and added depth to the overall story.
I will definitely be getting the next book in the series.

8 people found this helpful

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  • DD
  • 11-09-21

Not great

There is a 3 person story line happening and just doesn't seem to have a good flow. Very choppy and difficult to follow. Narrator did a wonderful job, but book falls short. Also is a multi-book commitment.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Roger
  • 09-11-21

Ancient Aliens Meets Logic and Reason

I really enjoyed the multiple storylines. The characters were well developed and engaging. The breadcrumbs the author gives are you just enough to keep you guessing without ruining the ending

5 people found this helpful

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  • Diego A.92
  • 20-10-21

Interesting story

If your interested in space travel, extraterrestrials, sci fi thrillers then this is the book for you. Great story telling too the guy wasn’t bad can’t wait to read the next book in the series.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Whaycon Kilby
  • 22-09-21

Interesting take on an old idea

This is a decent rehash of ideas like The Martian Chronicles and Red Planet. Nothing really new, but the writing is decent and the performance is excellent. Pick it up, it's worth a casual listen.

5 people found this helpful

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  • John
  • 28-02-22

Pretty good until the stupid.

I was enjoying this book until the last couple of chapters. It was intriguing and suspenseful . . . right up until you find out that (spoiler alert) the ancient being is Cain of biblical lore and that the enemy is his brother Able, imprisoned on Mars and soon to attach the Earth. Worse yet, it is book one of three. It could only get worse. I've since read reviews on book 2 and 3. Don't wast your time.

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  • adele1970
  • 22-11-21

Interesting Adventure

A fevered hunt for a destroyed Mars exploration ship whose remnants are scattered at the bottom of the Indian Ocean and the investigation into a long vanished archeologist on the trail of “ancient builders” form the basis of a interesting and mysterious adventure.

The story was well written and kept my interest throughout and the main protagonists were well fleshed out and given life by solid narration.

After reading this first book I was looking forward to next one in the series.




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  • Matthew
  • 05-10-21

Mars in the headlines yet again...

It seems there is an "artifact on Mars" book out monthly these days. Which is fine, if that is what you are into I suppose. Fortunately, I am, and thus, this offering is recommended. Joshua Calvert is nothing less than prolific, and as usual, his work here could do with some tightening up. 3 separate plot arcs are in play, which is not surprising considering this is the first book of what appears to be a Trilogy. As usual, Jonathan Davis is outstanding and brings so much of this book to life. I can't say it was outstanding, but this performance alone makes this one part of my recommended list.

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  • AR
  • 04-04-22

I tried

Just completely way to vague to get into. If I can exchange it I will. I did suffer all the way through it, but that is because I try to never give up on a book.

1 person found this helpful