The Ocean Dark
Ballantine, Jul 27 2010, $7.99
In a rarely noticed remote island in the Caribbean, the Mariposa cargo ship heads to its meeting with the Antoinette to pick up an illegal shipment of guns. However, the criminal crew mostly from Costa Rica is attacked by deadly apparently amphibious creatures.
When the Antoinette finally reaches the rendezvous point, they find an island littered with broken ships. The crew of almost entirely felons with one undercover FBI agent on board is under siege. A nearby FBI vessel serendipitously follows the Antoinette, but hesitates whether to intervene. While in the States DOD scientists have an idea what is terrorizing the Antoinette, but protocol slows down their assistance. All hell has broken loose in a tiny dot in the Caribbean.
This is an exciting horror thriller as the beasts mount up quite a number of kills even before readers meet the amphibious species up front and in person. The story line is fast-paced with mostly unsympathetic characters like the last survivor on the Mariposa Braulio putting a human face to the terror. Action-packed from the first bloody scream to the last, fans will enjoy this exhilarating sea thriller mindful of the Beast from the Black Lagoon especially over the first third of the novel. Harriet Klausner
St. Martin’s, Sep 14 2010, $27.99
After pastry chef Elizabeth “Lizzie” Tucker inherited her eccentric Great Aunt Ophelia’s home in Marblehead, she quit her job and moved from New York City to Massachusetts. She became a pastry chef at Dazzle’s Bakery in Salem. Everything is going right for her until a handsome man entered the store and touched her hand; leaving a burn mark on her. Her life turns further complicated when Diesel shows up at the store and her home.
He informs Lizzie that they are both “Unmentionables” humans with special abilities; his is to find people whiles hers is to locate objects. He needs her to find the SALIGIA Stones; each one possesses a power of the Seven Deadly Sins. His cousin Wulf wants the stones to create hell on earth while Diesel wants them hidden in a safe place. Lizzie and Diesel go after Gluttony, which has been fractured into pieces with each segment given to a member of the Hope family by their Uncle Phil. However, no matter how diligent the pair is, Wulf is always a step or two ahead of them until he obtains his first piece while the two unmentionables feel increasingly hopeless.
Janet Evanovich’s new series opens with a great first entry filled with her trademark humor especially as Lizzie takes on the characteristics of an Unmentionable and the storyline contains plenty of action and romance. The heat generated by Lizzie and Diesel will burn reader fingers while the villain is the more fascinating player as he is an enigmatic wicked yet charismatic person. Readers will look forward to the next adventures of this interesting cast.