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Cindy Vallar, Editor & Reviewer
P.O. Box 425, Keller, TX  76244-0425


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Cover Art: Force 12 in German Bight
Force 12 in German Bight
By James Boschert
Penmore Press, 2014, ISBN 978-1-942756-00-2, $17.50
Also available in e-book formats
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After an apparent suicide at Paddington Station, Detective Inspector Steven Greenfield of the London Metropolitan Police discovers the victim may actually have been murdered. That makes it a case for Scotland Yard, but he’s intrigued enough to continue investigating. As he tracks down the killer, another man dies and the trail leads to a former Royal Marine who is on his way to Denmark.

Patrick McFarlane is an electronics engineer aboard an aging dredging barge 100 miles off the Danish coast in German Bight, an area of the North Sea. Returning from vacation, he finds a party in his cabin where drinking and smoking pot are the main entertainment. He’d rather be elsewhere, but the pay is too good. Although there is another engineer on board, Pat is the one with the knack for jury rigging fixes that keep the worn-out generators and radio working. During one of his inspection tours of the machinery, he comes across the body of an American rigger and, from the look of the wound, Pat knows the man was murdered. He goes to get help, and when he returns, the victim has been moved and Pat thinks he saw someone leaving the room.

Danish Detective Inspector Erland Knudson and Assistant Detective Hedi Iverson arrive on board the barge to investigate. Knudson orders the barge to head for Denmark, and then retires to his cabin to drink. The only female aboard the barge, Hedi suspects there is more to the murder, but everyone, including Pat McFarlane, is not telling all they know.

On his rounds Pat discovers a delivery being made in the middle of the night. That’s unusual, but even more so are the four armed men who also come aboard. His previous military training puts him on high alert, and when Hedi comes upon him while he’s watching, he realizes he must keep her safe too. But there is at least one, and probably more, traitors aboard, making it difficult to know whom he and Hedi can trust. If pirates with automatic weapons and a second murder aren’t dangerous enough, Mother Nature unleashes a force 12 storm with severe winds and waves at least sixty-five feet high.

Set during the 1980s, the majority of the story takes place in one of the world’s most dangerous and unpredictable seas. The well-drawn characters, many of whom are salty, hard-drinking men, draw you into the isolated world in which they live and work. Readers experience the gale-force winds, the rough seas, and the harrowing danger Pat and Hedi endure. Boschert vividly spins separate threads into an intricate web of spine-tingling, hair-raising adventure. This tale is so gripping it defies the reader’s ability to read for just a short time. If you dare open the cover of Force 12 in German Bight, be prepared to stay for the long haul. It is a journey as powerful as the perfect storm.

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Review Copyrighted ©2016 Cindy Vallar

 


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