Matthew Reilly is one of the best writers I have read in how he jumps straight into the action and never drops the breakneck pace until the story ends. The same remains true for Contest
which is a tightly wound story with a strong plot, a few thrill moments but is on the whole non-stop action reading.
Many writers prove incapable of retaining a quality of writing whilst also providing thrills and action. Reilly here shows what quality action writing can be.
The plot of a man taken to play a role inside an alien vs human contest is interesting. But its the delivery of that plot along with the finer details that make it work. The fact that our hero has a young daughter to protect plus needing to survive without having the ability to be a ruthless killer provide psychological interest.
Then beyond that the book is just pure pleasure to read to enjoy monsters and ingenuity and daring escapes. It's book that reads like a top-class and full-pace action film with all the best bits. So if you like action read the book before you make me carry on scraping the bottom of the barrel.