Sunday, August 22, 2010
"Deep Six" by Mark Powell
We are not talking about those kind of pirates here. In Deep Six, Mark Powell has crafted a tale that takes us into the brutal world of modern-day Somalian pirates and the over-privileged, ennui-filled civilians that are recruited to kill them.
This is Powell's second Mark McCabe novel, the first being Quantum Breach. McCabe is ex-SAS, an ex-banker, heavy on the charm and masculinity with a penchant for getting himself into some extremely adrenaline-pumping situations.
The writing is straightforward, open and honest, although at times it feels as if Powell doesn't completely trust his reader enough and resorts to over explanation. The only other observation is that Powell will occasionally switch perspectives mid-chapter which can be jarring. However, the characters are engaging, which, when added to the gripping action, can make for a compelling read.
If you were a fan of Quantum Breach, you will find Deep Six an improvement on a promising series, instead of the occasional dreaded sophomore slump. We revisit some old characters we love (and love to hate) and the back-story is further fleshed out. McCabe is definitely a character worth revolving a story around.
If Powell is new to you, you should give this author a try. The fact that he's drawing from his own military (and financial) background lends a truthfulness to his story lines that's exciting. The novel is filled with deeply flawed human beings that Powell wisely refrains from psychoanalyzing. The Somalian pirates and their hierarchy is fascinating and topical, giving this novel a very up-to-date feel.
Take some time to check this promising new-ish writing talent out!