From the Book Jacket…
Bush pilot and family man Tom Stokes is about to face the worst day of his life. On a clear winter morning, he sets out in his Cessna 180 to do some repairs on a remote hunt camp, leaving his five-year-old son and very pregnant wife snug in their beds. On the return trip, a squall forces him into an emergency landing and he winds up—quite literally—in the lap of petty criminal Dale Knight. Dale, now a fugitive from the law—and worse, from a merciless drug lord who just happens to be his brother—draws Tom into a web of mayhem and treachery that puts not only his life at risk, but the lives of his wife, son . . . and unborn child.
AUTHOR: SEAN COSTELLO
PUBLISHER: RED TOWER PUBLICATIONS
GENRE: MYSTERY, THRILLER & SUSPENSE
WEBSITE: SEAN COSTELLO
A BUSH PILOT leaves home on a routine repair job when the weather changes unexpectedly. Tom crashes his plane into a house where an addict turned thief is hiding from his drug cartel brother. The hit men sent to kill Dale identify Tom, which puts the pilot’s pregnant wife and young son at risk. Tom and Dale must elude trained killers and travel miles in a storm to reach Tom’s family.
Although the plotline is pedestrian—criminals hunting criminals with bystanders caught in the middle—the third person POV shows the motivations of a diverse cast of characters. The descriptive narrative of the inclement weather generates suspense and the northern Ontario setting works well.
Costello does a good job creating a believable character in Tom’s wife. Mandy’s skills and personality show at the beginning, which lends credibility to her calm demeanor as the story progresses.
Many was a crack shot with any kind of firearm. She’d been competing at some of the highest levels since high school, and for a while, before deciding to become a pilot, had been grooming herself for the Olympics.
However, the hit men are caricatures and the literary device doesn’t work well with the overall plot. The brothers’ absurd and implausible behavior creates a humorous aspect that deflects from the suspense and makes the ending predictable.
A quick read with well-described settings, engaging protagonists, and a healthy dose of suspense.