A gratifying page-turner that’s perfect for a summer read.


A friendship is tested when a chance encounter results in death and an unexpected conspiracy in Shae’s (Restless Secrets, 2017) thriller.

Regan Quinn and Nikolas “Niko” Mararious have been close ever since they were kids. They grew up together in a Greek orphanage, so they have a unique bond that’s helped them through the worst of times. Both are accomplished sailors, but after years of grueling work, they’re ready for a change. When Regan comes to Niko with some exciting news, it seems like things are looking up: A lucky bargain allowed Regan to buy an old marina and restaurant in Ireland, and he asks Niko to be his business partner. Niko’s initial elation is quickly overshadowed by a dark secret that he’s reluctant to share, even with his close friend, involving a criminal past. To make matters worse, the pair find themselves involved in a murder after a confrontation turns deadly. Knowing their lives are at risk, they make plans to leave for Ireland, confident they’ll be safe at last. But little do they know that Liam O’Hare, the sinister captain of the infamous ship the Autumn Wind and Niko’s former boss, will stop at nothing to derail their plans. Shae describes the ruggedness of sea life in startling detail, and the sense of dread surrounding the activities aboard the titular boat heightens the sense of anxiety: “He did not speak of what went on aboard the ship; no one did, because the crew was made up of desperate men who were safer on the Autumn Wind than anywhere else.” There are a few side plots that add other intriguing elements, such as a budding romance between Regan and Loren Lombardi, an Italian crime reporter. Mistaken identities, revenge, and betrayal all have a part to play, and the exotic locales only add to the intoxicating atmosphere of intrigue. The contrast in characterization between Niko and Regan is strikingly complex, and their opposite personalities generate tension and exhilaration. Several other side characters keep things lively and amusing, and the addition of an organized crime element gives the story a satisfying edge.

A gratifying page-turner that’s perfect for a summer read.

Pub Date: May 31, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5255-3314-3

Page Count: 390

Publisher: FriesenPress

Review Posted Online: July 24, 2019

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A first novel, this is also a first person account of Scout's (Jean Louise) recall of the years that led to the ending of a mystery, the breaking of her brother Jem's elbow, the death of her father's enemy — and the close of childhood years. A widower, Atticus raises his children with legal dispassion and paternal intelligence, and is ably abetted by Calpurnia, the colored cook, while the Alabama town of Maycomb, in the 1930's, remains aloof to their divergence from its tribal patterns. Scout and Jem, with their summer-time companion, Dill, find their paths free from interference — but not from dangers; their curiosity about the imprisoned Boo, whose miserable past is incorporated in their play, results in a tentative friendliness; their fears of Atticus' lack of distinction is dissipated when he shoots a mad dog; his defense of a Negro accused of raping a white girl, Mayella Ewell, is followed with avid interest and turns the rabble whites against him. Scout is the means of averting an attack on Atticus but when he loses the case it is Boo who saves Jem and Scout by killing Mayella's father when he attempts to murder them. The shadows of a beginning for black-white understanding, the persistent fight that Scout carries on against school, Jem's emergence into adulthood, Calpurnia's quiet power, and all the incidents touching on the children's "growing outward" have an attractive starchiness that keeps this southern picture pert and provocative. There is much advance interest in this book; it has been selected by the Literary Guild and Reader's Digest; it should win many friends.

Pub Date: July 11, 1960

ISBN: 0060935464

Page Count: 323

Publisher: Lippincott

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 1960

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While a few weeks ago it seemed as if Praeger would have a two month lead over Dutton in their presentation of this Soviet best seller, both the "authorized" edition (Dutton's) and the "unauthorized" (Praeger's) will appear almost simultaneously. There has been considerable advance attention on what appears to be as much of a publishing cause celebre here as the original appearance of the book in Russia. Without entering into the scrimmage, or dismissing it as a plague on both your houses, we will limit ourselves to a few facts. Royalties from the "unauthorized" edition will go to the International Rescue Committee; Dutton with their contracted edition is adhering to copyright conventions. The Praeger edition has two translators and one of them is the translator of Doctor Zhivago Dutton's translator, Ralph Parker, has been stigmatized by Praeger as "an apologist for the Soviet regime". To the untutored eye, the Dutton translation seems a little more literary, the Praeger perhaps closer to the rather primitive style of the original. The book itself is an account of one day in the three thousand six hundred and fifty three days of the sentence to be served by a carpenter, Ivan Denisovich Shukhov. (Solzhenitsyn was a political prisoner.) From the unrelenting cold without, to the conditions within, from the bathhouse to the latrine to the cells where survival for more than two weeks is impossible, this records the hopeless facts of existence as faced by thousands who went on "living like this, with your eyes on the ground". The Dutton edition has an excellent introduction providing an orientation on the political background to its appearance in Russia by Marvin Kalb. All involved in its publication (translators, introducers, etc.) claim for it great "artistic" values which we cannot share, although there is no question of its importance as a political and human document and as significant and tangible evidence of the de-Stalinization program.

Pub Date: June 15, 1963

ISBN: 0451228146

Page Count: 181

Publisher: Praeger

Review Posted Online: Oct. 5, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1963

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