The Two Lost Mountains by Matthew Reilly, Review: Audacious

The Two Lost Mountains is the latest audaciously good-hearted action-adventure thriller in Matthew Reilly’s much-loved Jack West Jr Series. Read on for my full review.

The Two Lost Mountains Book Synopsis

The Two Lost Mountains - Matthew Reilly - Book Review BannerAN INCREDIBLE VICTORY BUT AT A TERRIBLE PRICE…

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…

… in Matthew Reilly’s The Two Lost Mountains.

(Pan Macmillan Australia – October 2020)

Genre: Action-Adventure, Thriller, Fantasy

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Some might consider my long-time fandom of Matthew Reilly’s novels my ‘guilty reading pleasure’, but I feel no shame in owning my enjoyment of them. Sure, his uncommonly simplistic, commercial writing style sits in stark contrast to the narratives I usually appreciate. But his Jack West Jr Series, and the “goodness” of its oddball bunch of protagonists, hooked me from its opening title released in 2005.

Each series instalment, including this penultimate The Two Lost Mountains, reliably consists of Jack, retired soldier/historian, and his multicultural team racing against the clock to solve ancient riddles/puzzles, and quite often, having to battle their way through booby-trapped mazes while dodging gunfire, in order to save the world. And a cliff-hanger… once, quite literally.

Sounds far-fetched? Very much so.

The Jack West Jr Series, is pure escapism, but the heartwarming kind. In the world of Jack West Jr, curiousity, intellect, loyalty and mateship, doing what is right no matter the personal cost and ‘never giving up’ is what eventually prevails. The bad guys, usually multiple bands of them, they are all brands of evil, and often-times come to very grisly ends.

An audacious pageturner

Once again, in The Two Lost Mountains, I admired Matthew Reilly’s sheer audacity. From his use of the word “shoom”, as in

“… the jeep shoomed off into the darkness of the tunnel, Jack saw Jaeger Eins toss a couple of grenades behind it…”

to ripe quips about religion, misogyny and other scandals, for the jaded amongst us. The one traditional piece of writing advice he does reliably ascribe to is, you must ‘kill your darlings’. That is what keeps readers on their toes. No team member is ever safe… no one.

Why does Reilly get away with the wanton appropriation of historical quotes, mythology, and pulling of glaring fictional trope strings to meet fictional ends? Because what is abundantly clear is his overriding intention to offer good-hearted entertainment, and while doing so he has undoubtedly inspired a love of reading amongst many who might not otherwise have entered a library.

Reilly has confirmed the next book, “One Something Something” scheduled for publication late 2021 will be the end of this series. So there is still time left to get onboard this rollercoaster ride with Jack West Jr and his lovable ragtag team. They are quick and easy reads so I highly recommend starting back where the countdown first began…  the novel Seven Ancient Wonders. Links to my reviews of all other titles in this series can be found below.

BOOK RATING: The Story 4.5 / 5 ; The Writing 3.5 / 5  — Overall 4

Get your copy of The Two Lost Mountains from:

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OR listen to the audiobook FREE with Audible’s Trial (check eligibility)

More action-packed thrillers:
Combustion and Velocity, both by Steve Worland  /  The Genius Plague by David Walton  /  To The Lions by Holly Watts  /  The Doctor of Aleppo by Dan Mayland  /  The Informationist by Taylor Stevens

About the Author, Matthew Reilly

Matthew Reilly is the internationally bestselling author of the Scarecrow novels: Ice Station, Area 7, Scarecrow, Scarecrow and the Army of Thieves and the novella Hell Island; the Jack West novels: Seven Ancient Wonders, The Six Sacred Stones, The Five Greatest Warriors, The Four Legendary Kingdoms ,  The Three Secret Cities and now The Two Lost Mountains; and the standalone novels Contest, Temple, Hover Car Racer, The Tournament, Troll Mountain, The Great Zoo of China and The Secret Runners of New York. His books are published in over 20 languages, with worldwide sales of over 7 million copies.

* Receiving a copy from the publisher for review purposes did not impact the expression of my honest opinions above.