DARK GOLD by David Angsten
Kirkus Star

DARK GOLD

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Thrills and chills come with shipwrecked treasure as a recent college grad searches for his missing brother on the Mexican coast.

Dan Duran is traveling the world. The last postcard he sent home is four months old and his mother fears that this time, her oldest has gotten himself killed. Not an outlandish assumption—he’s already been in foreign jails for smuggling drugs and antiquities. As a favor to Mom, brother Jack and his college buddies Duff and Rock agree to look around Puerto Vallarta for Dan. What they find is a lifetime’s worth of adventure in the space of a week. After a harrowing night at a Mexican biker bar (Jack wakes to find “Yanqui Go Home” carved into his back), they follow one final lead to Dan’s last known whereabouts, the cursed village of Punta Perdida. They hitch a ride down the coast on the Obi-man, a state-of-the-art yacht manned by two gorgeous women—Eva and Candy—and owned by the mysterious Leo Bellocheque, a Bahamian businessman with an agenda of his own. In Punta Perdida, Jack finds a deaf-mute priest who has Dan’s journal and swears Dan is dead. Piecing together clues from Dan’s notes, which include a rubbing of a gold coin Bellocheque had earlier said belonged to his great-great-grandfather, Jack demands some answers. It seems Dan had contacted Bellocheque months ago, sending the gold coin as proof of his discovery of the sunken treasure of the Argonaut. A slave ship turned gold convoy, it carried the fortune of Bellocheque’s ancestor, a freed man who was swindled and enslaved by the ship’s captain. With the gold under the yacht, the group could make quick work of the retrieval except for a few deadly obstacles: a man-eating manta ray called El Diablo Blanco, the murderous, devil-worshipping residents of Punta Perdida and speed-sniffing gangsters looking for Dan’s gold. Overwriting rears its head as many times as the manta ray: “My life was to be thrown away for these cursed lumps of ore.” But never mind, it’s all part of the campy fun of the treasure hunt.

Sunken gold, black magic, sea monsters, a beautiful Brazilian in a bikini—what more could you want from a summer thriller?

Pub Date: July 6th, 2006
ISBN: 0-312-34373-6
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Dunne/St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15th, 2006




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