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Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead is the first original adult novel in the Indiana Jones series published by Del Rey Books since the release of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. It is written by Steve Perry, and was released on September 29, 2009.

Publisher's summary[]

There's no rest for the weary treasure hunter, but that's how Indiana Jones likes it. Fresh from spying for the Allies in the thick of World War II Germany, the globe-trotting archaeologist doesn't need much persuading to join his cohort "Mac" McHale in searching for one of the most coveted of artifacts: the fabled black pearl known as the Heart of Darkness. But the partners in adventure are not alone on their foray into the mysterious jungles of Haiti. German and Japanese agents are in hot pursuit, determined to possess the ebony artifact -- and its secrets -- for their own sinister purposes. And shadowing them all is an infamous voodoo priest, with powers of both diabolical science and black magic at his command.

On a treacherous odyssey across the Island of the Dead, where the legend of zombi looms large, spiders, snakes, and booby-traps will prove the least of Indy's challenges. And capturing the prize will be child's play compared with confronting an enemy unlike any other, whose numbers are legion and nearly impossible to kill -- because they're already dead...




Vehicles and vessels[]



Behind the scenes[]


Before signing onto the project, Steve Perry and his then-collaborator Michael Reaves had pitched a Star Wars novel entitled Holostar to Del Rey around 2007. However, while Del Rey liked the basic idea, they asked for some large-scale changes the authors weren't inclined to make, halting their plans. When the writers were re-approached to write the novel with the requested changes still in place, Perry gave Reaves his blessing to continue on without him. Reaves went on to partner with Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff and the book eventually saw publication as Shadow Games in 2011.[1] One day after the meeting, Perry received a call from his editor, Shelly Shapiro, asking if he was interested in writing an Indiana Jones novel, which Perry accepted.[2]


A self-made map Steve Perry drew to show his editor where Zile Muri-yo was located.

Once signed on to write what became Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead, Perry was told by Del Rey that the timeframe they had in mind for the book was during World War II and that he should flesh out the backstory of George McHale, a main character who had recently been introduced in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.[2]

Perry wrote a springboard and the outline over a few weeks, although the writing of the manuscript itself took four months. While neither Lucasfilm nor Del Rey objected to many of the ideas presented in his manuscript, such as Indy faced with having to deal with the undead, Perry initially intended to include a larger romance plot and the titular archaeologist complaining about being older, but he was asked to scale it back. He also needed to alter some names that were too similar to actual historical figures.[2]

Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead is somewhat unusual for an Indiana Jones story in that much its focus is given over to the antagonists. In this case Edwin Gruber and Yamada Hajime, leading competing Nazi and Japanese Imperial Army groups respectively, in search of the MacGuffin despite their countries being allies the war, and the Haitian bokor Boukman who commanded the dead. According to Perry, the reason he gave more spotlight to the villains is because he felt that their motivations needed to be worked to make them more intriguing and interesting – as Jones' were familiar to the audience and Mac was being fleshed out – believing that villains who don't think they are villains are more entertaining than those who embrace it.[2]

The Heart of Darkness was chosen as the MacGuffin as Perry wanted something magical and a mysterious African pearl which had found its way to Haiti seemed the right option.[2]


While the first chapter simply notes that the adventure starts in the summer of 1943, a reference to Indiana Jones being forty-four years old places the story after July 1, Jones' birthday.

Notes and references[]

External links[]

Indiana Jones novels
Raiders of the Lost Ark · Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade · Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles: The Mata Hari Affair
Cancelled: Indiana Jones and the Staff of Kings
Original stories
Indiana Jones and the Peril at Delphi · Indiana Jones and the Dance of the Giants
Indiana Jones and the Seven Veils · Indiana Jones and the Genesis Deluge
Indiana Jones and the Unicorn's Legacy · Indiana Jones and the Interior World
Indiana Jones and the Sky Pirates · Indiana Jones and the White Witch
Indiana Jones and the Philosopher's Stone · Indiana Jones and the Dinosaur Eggs
Indiana Jones and the Hollow Earth · Indiana Jones and the Secret of the Sphinx
Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead
Overseas exclusives
Indiana Jones and the Feathered Serpent · Indiana Jones and the Longship of the Gods
Indiana Jones and the Gold of El Dorado · Indiana Jones and the Sword of Genghis Khan
Indiana Jones and the Lost People · Indiana Jones and the Secret of Easter Island
Indiana Jones and the Labyrinth of Horus · Indiana Jones and the Avalon Inheritance
Young adult Indiana Jones novels · Timeline of novels
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June 1943 Summer 1943 August 1943
Indiana Jones und das Gold von El Dorado Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead Indiana Jones und das Verschwundene Volk