The Two Lost Mountains by Matthew Reilly

January 28, 2021

Please note, The Two Lost Mountains is the sixth book in an ongoing series. If you haven’t read what has come before then chances are the review below is going to contain minor spoilers. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. 



Against all the odds, Jack West Jr found the Three Secret Cities but at a heartbreaking cost.

His beloved daughter Lily, it appeared, was slaughtered by Sphinx in a cruel ancient ritual.


With his rivals far ahead of him, Jack must now get to one of the five iron mountains-two of which have never been found-and perform a mysterious feat known only as ‘The Fall’.

Although what is this object on the moon that is connected to it?


Amid all this, Jack will discover that a new player has entered the race, a general so feared by the four legendary kingdoms they had him locked away in their deepest dungeon.

Only now this general has escaped and he has a horrifying plan of his own… 

Wow! So here we are, the penultimate novel in the Jack West Jr series by Matthew Reilly. It’s been one hell of a ride so far. The good news is there is no sign of that ride stopping yet. The Two Lost Mountains continues our story with the same breakneck narrative we’ve come to expect.

Events pick up immediately after the shocking cliff-hanger at the end of The Three Secret Cities. Just as well, those of us who have come this far would not have gone a step further without that particular revelation being resolved.

Like a modern-day Indiana Jones, our intrepid hero travels the world seeking out ancient civilisations and artefacts to unlock the secrets left behind. Jack and Indy are cut from the same cloth, the indomitable hero who steadfastly refuses to ever back down. The author does a great job of keeping Jack on his toes. There are large sections of the plot where Jack is playing catchup and Reilly has woven a growing sense of urgency into Jack’s actions. Slowing down now would lead to catastrophic failure. From a reader’s perspective, this is great. Jack is always on the move from location to location, from jaw-dropping event to jaw-dropping event.

There are moments where Jack does falter, but that is when the large cast of family, friends and allies come to the fore. Jack would be nothing without the people he surrounds himself with. Sky Monster and Rufus for the win! There is a particularly nice scene where Jack’s mother, Mabel Merriweather, explains to another character what lies at the core of our hero’s personality. What is the x-factor is it that keeps Jack moving ever forwards? I’ll not spoil it by telling you what she says but I can confirm Mabel’s explanation fits Jr to a tee.

Reilly’s writing is ultimately all about the action. This is a race to save or rule the world after all. The Jack West Jr novels are the literary equivalent of the Mission Impossible movies after they’ve been dosed with an extra adrenaline shot. When it comes to the best action thrillers, I think you just have to jump on in and experience the ride. Matthew Reilly is a master when it comes to upping the ante every single chapter. Just when you think you get to the point when you can take a breath something even more unexpected than before kicks off. I love the pure escapism of the writing. This is no holds barred explosive action that captures your attention and refuses to let you look away.

Over the last five books, we’ve come to love our heroes and hate the villains. Sure, the characters are a bit larger than life but that’s why they are so much fun. When Jack and co succeed we cheer them on. When they suffer a loss, we feel their collective pain. They are such a well-established group now that they feel like friends. The villains are also great fun, lots of moustache-twirling evil deeds and what have you. Reilly lets West’s foes chew the scenery at every opportunity. Dastardly monologuing and flashes of violent psychopathy always make for a jolly antagonist. The Sphinx is clearly unhinged but, just to make things that little bit more extreme, a new villain is introduced. To suggest they are the dictionary definition of a nihilist would be putting it mildly. As we hurtle towards the conclusion of the entire story, Mr West has some serious individuals that stand between him and saving humanity.

I’ll be honest, I’ll going to miss Jack when he is gone. For now, I can console myself that I get to relish The Two Lost Mountains and wait impatiently for the final book in this epic spectacle of a series.

The Two Lost Mountains is published by Orion and is available now. The One Something Something* is set to follow at a later date. This series has been about as action-packed as is humanly possible. I am sure we are in for quite the grand finale. I for one cannot wait.

Last year I was fortunate enough to see a superior action movie called Extraction. It stars a little-known Australian actor called Chris Hemsworth. It got me thinking about the possibility of Jack West Jr making the jump from book to screen. Who could they possibly cast in the lead? Anyway, my musical recommendation to accompany The Two Lost Mountains is the soundtrack to that film by Henry Jackman and Alex Belcher.

*This is the title placeholder the author uses in the interview at the end of the novel. If it is good enough for Matthew Reilly, it’s good enough for me.

No Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *