I heard on NPR yesterday that there’s a new Indiana Jones movie coming out in 2008; The Geographer’s Library could easily be used and abused for the plot of an Indiana Jones movie, even though there are no archeologists in the book. In fact, one of the historical artifacts mentioned in the book was also the subject of the NPR commentary that followed up the mention of the new Indiana Jones picture.
The Geographer’s Library also reminded me of The Eight by Katherine Neville, a book I read and reviewed in 2005. It uses the same alchemy/sacred objects/fountain of youth motifs as The Eight, and there’s a lot of globe-trotting, obscure settings, espionage, murder, and mayhem. An innocent young reporter, Paul Tomm, finds himself caught up in a web of violence, mystery and deceit when he’s only trying to write an obituary for a recently deceased college professor. The narrative moves back and forth from Tomm the Journalist in his backwater town in New England to those afore-mentioned obscure places where someone or some group of people is collecting ancient artifacts that have somethig to do with alchemy and the extension of life.
Is the professor who died old or REALLY old, as in centuries old?
Is the professor a jewel thief or an assassin or an alchemist —or all three?
Is Paul’s new girlfriend, Hannah, an innocent music teacher or a conspirator?
Should Paul back off the story and save his own skin or pursue it and risk his life?
Substitute Indiana Jones for the intrepid reporter; travel around the world to exotic locations to investigate instead of staying in sleepy New England; insert a few cliff-hanger scenes where Indiana almost falls into a trap, but escapes by a hair’s breadth. Voila! you have your 2009 Indiana Jones blockbuster!
(I suppose you’d have to pay Mr. Fasman a moderate sum of money for taking his novel and rewriting it as a totally different story. However, there are precedents galore. Oh, and Mr. Spielberg, you could throw in a few hundred dollars for me since I came up with the idea.)