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An Eye for Gold [Mass Market Paperback]

Sarah Andrews
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Dec 9 2001 Em Hansen Mysteries (Book 6)
Packed with suspense, science and lots of gold, Sarah Andrews' sixth novel takes us from the eagles' domain high over the American West right down into the depths of the earth itself.

Like a modern-day Sherlock Holmes, Andrews' engaging heroine, forensic geologist Emily Hansen, uses geological clues to solve crimes. Now, fresh from extricating herself-just barely-from suspicion in the investigation of the murder of a dinosaur paleontologist in Salt Lake City, Em allows a wily FBI agent to talk her into assisting the Bureau on another case.

Em and the agent head into the deserts of Nevada: gambling and gold mining country, where fortunes-and lives-are won and lost. Their task is to investigate the high stakes behind conflicting reports about an endangered species on federal land, land the government has leased to a proposed billion-dollar gold-mining operation.

But when they arrive, they discover the case has taken an alarming and lethal turn. The biologist they have flown five hundred miles to interrogate lies dead in her pickup truck at the edge of a lonesome road, and a key mining geologist has gone missing. What started as a simple fraud investigation quickly develops into an intricate murder case in which Em must unravel the secrets of gold, the desert, and an Indian tribe struggling to maintain its secrets. The wide-open spaces harbor a deadly enigma that is all too human-and what's at stake is not just Em's life.

Andrews has updated observations into the dirt on dead men's shoes for the golden age of high-tech forensic analysis. An Eye for Gold is an enthralling, nail-biting adventure in the air and underground-her best book yet.

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From Amazon

Forensic geologist Emily Hansen has come to Salt Lake City to see her lover and perhaps to marry him. But before she makes the decision, she is manipulated by FBI agent Tom Latimer into investigating a possibly fraudulent gold-mining operation on federal land. Another geologist is missing, and a scientist charged with assessing the environmental impact of proposed new drilling operations is dead in what appears to Em to be murder rather than an accident.

Author Sarah Andrews's strength is her feeling for the arid landscape of Utah and Nevada. She is somewhat shakier in describing her heroine's conflicted emotions about her problematic romantic attachment and the strong sense of autonomy that leads her to take Latimer's bait and get involved in the case. The physical landscape is brilliantly evoked, while the territory of the heart has more subtle boundaries that draw the reader in to a rather convoluted plot. This is the sixth outing for Em, and Andrews's fans will follow her anywhere, even through the detailed and somewhat tedious scientific and geological explanations about mining and a barely more compelling explication of gold's timeless allure. The minor characters are more interesting than many of the central figures: a Paiute shaman, a wealthy woman who pilots her own plane, and the upright Mormon policeman whose proposal provokes Em's exploration into her own inner world. Readers can expect to find out more about him in Em's next outing. --Jane Adams --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Following on the heels of the successful Bone Hunter (1999), this new mystery featuring forensic geologist Em Hansen is a disappointment, with too little plot and too much discourse on hard-rock mining. A scattershot beginning introduces an overabundance of characters. Then, instead of getting to the meat of the story, the author focuses on Hansen hemming and hawing about whether she should help FBI agent Tom Latimer on a case concerning Granville Resources, a gold-mining company, or hang out with her handsome Mormon boyfriend, Ray. This dithering seems pretty coy once she's fully involved in Tom's investigation. Hansen spends an awful lot of time crisscrossing deserts in planes and in her truck, looking into potential irregularities about permits, claims and other dealings between the suspect Granville Resources and the federal Bureau of Land Management. During most of this period, she's kept in the dark about the nature of the case, as is the reader. After 300 pages of random speculations and false starts, the plot finally begins to heat up, but at this point it's too late. Much of the information about the gold market, the history of mining and refining techniques is fascinating, but taken all together, it's oppressive and overwhelms the scrap of story line underneath. In a closing author's note, Andrews discusses some of the moral issues raised by mining and the depletion of our natural resources. Agent, Deborah Schneider. (Sept.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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WHEN HE HAD FINISHED ASKING HIS QUESTION, HE put one elbow on the table, rested his chin in his hand, and waited for me to speak. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read to get away grom it all Aug. 15 2000
Format:Hardcover
It has been a bust for the oil industry with prices so low that many companies are laying off long time employees. Forensic geologist Em Hansen is out of work again so she visits her boyfriend Ray to see if their relationship has any longevity. While in Salt Lake City, Em joins FBI agent Tom Latimer for lunch. They successfully worked together on a case and Tom actively recruits Em to join the Feds. Em rejects the notion of joining such a regimented group as the FBI.

She accompanies Tom to Nevada where he investigates a claim filed against a mining company. Pat Gilmore claims that this proposed mining operation will destroy the habitat of an endangered species. However, by the time Em and Tom reach their destination, Pat has died in a car accident. Em cannot resist the lure of sleuthing, which brings her to the attention of someone whose actions place the geologist on a personal endangered list.

Oil prices aside, a Sarah Andrews mystery is a human drama. Her latest tale allows her fans to see inside the heroine in such a way tht the reader grasps Em's confusion due to the conflict between her inner fears and dreams. The mystery is well done and fast-paced aided by complex secondary characters. AN EYE FOR GOLD is treasure for anyone who enjoys an environmental who-done-it.

Harriet Klausner
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4.0 out of 5 stars good story Sept. 4 2001
Format:Hardcover
I was not originally going to review this book but disagreed wildly with the other reviews. I thought the mining detail was one of the most interesting facets of the book, not at all hard to follow, and added immensely to my enjoyment of the book. Similarly, i was delighted with the non-formulaic nature of the plot; it is intriguing not to be able to unravel the whole thing on page 10 or so. I also enjoyed the digression into the character of the missing geologist and his relationship with his wife. For me, the most unconvincing and flattest part of the book is Em's relationship with Ray, her ostensible love interest. Maybe he will develop some in later books, but I just could not believe that this woman could have reached the point of thinking about marrying someone who wants her to abandon the intellectual side of her nature. Nor am i convinced by Em's repeated soul-searching and rejection of requests to helf the FBI. This woman could not be this un-self-aware.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Tough read... Dec 23 2000
By Bobbrun
Format:Hardcover
I really enjoy the Em Hanson books and would have easily given the other books in the series 5 stars, but this book is far too technical for the average reader. At times, I felt like I was reading a miner's manual. For me, all of the explanations of mining procedures, chemical analysis and mineral analysis did not add to the story. I found myself skipping over many paragraphs then would have to back up and reread. That got very tedious.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Zero star is more like it Jan. 16 2001
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I was very disappointed by this book. I found the writing to be ok but the story was not well structured and this book needed some serious editing it did not receive. I did not find anything about the characters appealing and frankly could not tell the good guys from the bad guys. If you want to read a much better written and interesting book with archaeology as a back drop I would highly recommned Beverly Connor's Airtight Case.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.6 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars good story Sept. 4 2001
By M. S. Butch - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I was not originally going to review this book but disagreed wildly with the other reviews. I thought the mining detail was one of the most interesting facets of the book, not at all hard to follow, and added immensely to my enjoyment of the book. Similarly, i was delighted with the non-formulaic nature of the plot; it is intriguing not to be able to unravel the whole thing on page 10 or so. I also enjoyed the digression into the character of the missing geologist and his relationship with his wife. For me, the most unconvincing and flattest part of the book is Em's relationship with Ray, her ostensible love interest. Maybe he will develop some in later books, but I just could not believe that this woman could have reached the point of thinking about marrying someone who wants her to abandon the intellectual side of her nature. Nor am i convinced by Em's repeated soul-searching and rejection of requests to helf the FBI. This woman could not be this un-self-aware.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tough read... Dec 23 2000
By Bobbrun - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I really enjoy the Em Hanson books and would have easily given the other books in the series 5 stars, but this book is far too technical for the average reader. At times, I felt like I was reading a miner's manual. For me, all of the explanations of mining procedures, chemical analysis and mineral analysis did not add to the story. I found myself skipping over many paragraphs then would have to back up and reread. That got very tedious.
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read to get away grom it all Aug. 15 2000
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
It has been a bust for the oil industry with prices so low that many companies are laying off long time employees. Forensic geologist Em Hansen is out of work again so she visits her boyfriend Ray to see if their relationship has any longevity. While in Salt Lake City, Em joins FBI agent Tom Latimer for lunch. They successfully worked together on a case and Tom actively recruits Em to join the Feds. Em rejects the notion of joining such a regimented group as the FBI.

She accompanies Tom to Nevada where he investigates a claim filed against a mining company. Pat Gilmore claims that this proposed mining operation will destroy the habitat of an endangered species. However, by the time Em and Tom reach their destination, Pat has died in a car accident. Em cannot resist the lure of sleuthing, which brings her to the attention of someone whose actions place the geologist on a personal endangered list.

Oil prices aside, a Sarah Andrews mystery is a human drama. Her latest tale allows her fans to see inside the heroine in such a way tht the reader grasps Em's confusion due to the conflict between her inner fears and dreams. The mystery is well done and fast-paced aided by complex secondary characters. AN EYE FOR GOLD is treasure for anyone who enjoys an environmental who-done-it.

Harriet Klausner
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly Refreshing March 27 2005
By SJ Williams - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I thoroughly enjoyed An Eye for Gold. I read the book for my geology class, but I found myself not being ble to put it down. Structurally, the writing style was unique, but because we discuss a lot of the subject matter in class, I found it more interesting. The biggest hinderance to me was her plot structure because it wasn't the traditional conflict-climax-resolution, but once I got past that I found it to be a real page turner.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars As an Editor Myself Dec 15 2010
By Jane F - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I would have enjoyed more of Sarah Andrews' books on my Kindle, but after seeing what a terrrible typist did to this book, I can understand why Andrews would balk at any more being produced. I hope the paperbacks/hardbacks are not of the same caliber.
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