Review - GRAVEYARD OF THE ATLANTIC, Helen Goltz
GRAVEYARD OF THE ATLANTIC is the second in the Mitchell Parker thriller series, so reading them backwards (as I am) is clearing up some unknowns, and creating a few more. Needless to say MASTERMIND, the first in the series is going to have to be read at some stage as now, if nothing else, this reader wants to know how this group got together in the first place.
Given the proximity of reading the third (THE FOURTH REICH) and now GRAVEYARD OF THE ATLANTIC it's possible to really see the way the series has evolved. Whilst the crisp dialogue, and the team interactions are as strong in this book as the third, there's definitely a much more coherent, and threatening plot in the later book. In GRAVEYARD OF THE ATLANTIC there is a more hefty suspension of disbelief required, of maybe it's just that the motivations here weren't quite so clear.
The action takes place in Washington and North Caroline, and from a quick check around, it seems that the waters around the second are area well known for the number of wrecks. This choice works for action that relies on a lot of above and below water activities, and some rather surprising spy type activities require diving gear and the occasional fishing rod. The way that the team pairs up into specialities for this action makes a lot of sense, and also gives this author a chance to bounce the relationships around.
As with the next book along, the interactions between these characters, and the way that the whole team works is undoubtedly one of the great strengths. They are fun people to be around, although not perfect by any means and the sniping, and the stuffing up feels real and very believable. In this case, as mentioned, the plot's not as coherent or as convincing however, but that may also be a factor in the nationality of the readership. There's something about Chinese submarines lurking in the waters off popular swimming and fishing locations, and much talk about "the VIP" that kind of makes this Australian reader of a "certain age" leap to a conclusion way before anything much actually gets a chance to get going.
Below the surface of the ocean, off the shores of Cape Hatteras, lie the bodies of many ships that never made it to shore and something more ... silent and sinister.
Two sets of fresh fingerprints on a pair of binoculars left on the beach are cause for concern for FBI Special Agent Mitchell Parker and his team, Nick Everett, Ellen Beetson and Samantha Moore. The prints belong to a criminal that is currently not listed as in the country and a foreign diplomat who disappeared a year ago.
And are the four Beijing police officers that are guests of the USA to study, the same four officers that left Beijing?
It’s a rough and violent ride for Mitchell Parker and his team against the ocean and the clock.