BLUE WATER DEAD by Stephen M. Goodrum


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A lonely ex-Navy SEAL finds himself falling in love while battling terrorism in the Motor City.

Trying to make a little extra cash doing PI work, twin photographers Al and Cane Majors inadvertently discover a clandestine meeting that involves the covert pickup of two pallets delivered via the Detroit River. What the twins have seen—and recorded—puts them in the sights of agents from the Coast Guard and Homeland Security whose motives have little to do with “national security.” The Majors turn for help to their church mentor, Vince Hardesty, an outreach counselor and former Navy SEAL who once protected Detroit’s northern border from security leaks. Vince reaches out to two people he hopes can save his city from a conspiracy that has wormed its way into an alarming number of local institutions: his friend Pat “Sandy” Sandelen, the DPD’s Homeland Security liaison, and the Spanish beauty Lt. Grace Venusuela Sanchez of the Coast Guard. As the threat of terrorism looms, Vince finds himself haunted by past losses and distracted by how quickly he’s falling for the alluring Lt. Venus. Goodrum’s debut is noteworthy for the ease with which its characters interact and for its crisp, back-and-forth dialogue, which manages to be clever while moving the story along. The residents of Detroit come from believable molds, magnified for a slightly larger-than-life tale. Other aspects of the book aren’t quite so deft. Many of the action scenes arrive so fast, they pack little punch, and the plot suffers from frequent digressions. The novel reflects a high attention to detail, especially as it concerns Detroit, a city that becomes as much of a character as Vince or Venus. It also makes fitting use of its thematic elements of pop music and Motown, with a story structure that mimics their spirit, keeping things fun and simple with an occasional twist.

A crime novel that’s exciting despite its unhurried pace.

Pub Date: April 19th, 2012
ISBN: 978-0615627557
Page count: 354pp
Publisher: SMGoodrum,plc
Program: Kirkus Indie
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