Thursday, August 12, 2010
"If at first you don't succeed you're running about average." M. H. Alderson
Emma Caldridge is running an ultramarathon in South Africa when a roadside bomb explodes. As she lay dazed, a man injected her with some medication and left. She was able to finish the event with surprising speed and endurance.
Kahlil Ibrahim Mungabe is in Dubai when his contact tells him that he will pay to have Mungabe and his Somalia pirates intercept a cruise ship. The ship hods pharmaceutical products that his contact, The Vulture, wants.
Darkview, an American company, provides security for the ship.
Recently, that company has sunk a number of Mungabe's boats and captured the pirates to stand trial. Mungabe wants them put out of business and The Vulture tells him that he agrees and the plan to do that is already in motion.
On the "Kaiser Franz" Cameron Sumner, an employee of Darkview is the first to observe the pirates approaching. Since it's a cruise ship, there are no weapons aboard but he smuggled his own rifle aboard and is able to fire a few rounds, wounding a pirate and discouraging the remainder of the raiders, for the moment.
The reader follows the action as The Vulture meets with his contact, Karl Tarrant, the man who dosed Emma. Tarrant performs the dirty work for his boss and he's ordered to inject another dose of the chemical into Emma. They know that this would have fatal results.
There are several attempts to discredit and disrupt Darkview and Emma volunteers to be smuggled onto the cruise ship since, as a chemist, she will be able to analyze the pharmaceuticals.
She will have to risk her life on more than one occasion, to reach the ship.
The story flows skillfully and the suspense is constant. The characters are well drawn and smypathetic.
The author's first novel, "Running from the Devil" won the best first novel award from the International Thriller Writers and this novel adds to her fine work and excellent reputation.