Monday, July 18, 2011


One of the joys of being a freelancer is having the opportunity to read books that I probably never would have otherwise. I try not to make it a habit to review books I’ve proofed or edited here on my blog, but recently I’ve read a number of well-written books by authors who are sharing them with the world for the first time. One such book is Deadly Straits by R.E. McDermott. When I read this book, I was impressed by the quality of writing and how smoothly the story flowed. When the author told me this was his first book, I was utterly amazed.

Rather than summarizing the book myself, here is the summary from the book’s Amazon page:

Consultant and very part-time spook Tom Dugan is a happy man until his CIA handler comes calling. With a hijacking investigation pointing to his long-time client and best friend, London ship owner Alex Kairouz, Dugan is guilty by association and forced to go under cover in Alex’s company to clear his own name.

In attempting to prove Alex’s innocence along with his own, Dugan manages to implicate them both more deeply, and when one of Alex’s tankers is found adrift near Singapore with a dead crew, and another explodes in port, Dugan is framed for the attacks.

When Alex is hospitalized, in critical condition after a suspicious suicide attempt, Dugan finds himself almost out of options. Convinced the attacks are prelude to an even more devastating assault, Dugan follows his last remaining lead to Russia, to be shanghaied as an ‘advisor’ to a Russian Spetsnaz unit and find himself sailing into Deadly Straits.

With his debut novel, McDermott sets the bar high—very high. This ambitious novel will keep you turning the pages to get to the thrilling conclusion. This is a truly impressive first book. I look forward to reading more from him. His writing is polished, and he manages to handle multiple plot lines that cover the world over. If you enjoy action-packed thrillers that make you feel like you’re actually participating in the action, make sure to read Deadly Straits.

Kindle:       Nook:


Peter Andrew Leonard said...

I'll have to put this one on my Amazon Wishlist. Sounds like something I would dig.

Neal Hock said...

I think you would enjoy this one, Andrew. It's an intriguing story that's very ambitious.