by Jeff Edwards
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Jeff Edwards’ Sea of Shadows (Stealth Books 2010) is a marvelous military thriller, especially if you’re a SWO officer serving on an American Destroyer. The story posits an oil-impoverished German nation, forced to trade some of the most modern weapons in the world to terrorists to get the oil the country can’t survive without. The plot revolves around the US and Britain’s efforts to stop delivery of these weapons–which include 3 ultra-modern submarines–as they transit from Germany, through the Med, down the Red Sea and almost to their port in the mythical nation of Siraj without starting the next world war. Throughout, the reader is regaled with political strategizing and naval battles the likes of which haven’t been seen since WWII, nor shared so succinctly since Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors.
If there is a protagonist in the story, it is a 20-year surface warfare veteran, Chief Petty Officer McPherson on the USS Towers. As the story unfolds, the Towers is battered by the enemy, but keeps coming back with creative attacks and strategies, often thanks to the out-of-the-box thinking of the Chief Petty Officer and the support of her Captain. Edwards does a masterful job of building suspense with tremendous detail in Naval strategy–if you’re a casual reader of military thrillers, you might even think there’s too much detail–and believable insight in the politics behind planning war-aversion strategies.
My only complaint about this naval thriller is that the action takes too long to start. Thrillers should jump right in. this one takes close to five pages before we get the first crisis. Overall, Sea of Shadows has good plot pacing, lots of intelligent action with riveting climaxes, exactly what makes me want to read Edwards’ next book.
You can buy this book on Amazon for $12.99, but I’d suggest you visit Edwards website a get it free–but hurry. That’s a limited time offer.
JJacqui Murray is the editor of a technology curriculum for K-fifth grade and creator of two technology training books for middle school. She is the author of Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy midshipman. She is webmaster for five blogs, an Amazon Vine Voicebook reviewer, a columnist for Examiner.com, Editorial Review Board member forJournal for Computing Teachers, an IMS tech expert, and a weekly contributor to Write Anything and Technology in Education. Currently, she’s working on a techno-thriller that should be ready this summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab,Ask a Tech Teacher.