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Reviewed by Scott Cahan for Readers' Favorite
Rising Wind by Diane Olsen is a story of adventure and spirituality. The story follows a man and a woman who don’t know each other at first but they are drawn together by a mysterious thunderbird that is supposed to be extinct. Secora is a paleontologist who goes to South America to track another animal that was also thought to be extinct, a giant sloth. In the process of finding the sloth, she stirs up all kinds of trouble and soon finds a group of assassins after her. Meanwhile, Gideon, a native American Indian who has left the ways and beliefs of his heritage behind, keeps having visions. A thunderbird is appearing to him and leading him to step out of his comfort zone and go to South America to help a woman he’s never met to fulfill a mysterious mission.
Rising Wind is an effective mixture of science, spirituality, and adventure. There is just enough science present in the story to make the giant sloth and a small race of people called the Duendes seem like they could be real. The book is also filled with lots of spirituality involving beliefs from several different religions. The most prevalent is from Native Americans which is how the thunderbird is explained. I’ve already mentioned the adventure aspect, but I’ll add that the story moves at a good pace, making every scene intriguing and at times exciting. This book has a good cast of characters, all with unique and relatable personalities. Rising Wind by Diane Olsen is the first book in a series. It will be interesting to see more of the thunderbirds and other strange creatures as the series unfolds.