Geologist Alex Graham’s primary job is to track down a silver mine; but her prospecting involves far more than minerals in Thirst, a saga of Canadian/US politics, a deadly pesticide spill, and a dangerous adversary who threatens numerous innocent lives.
It’s unusual to pair a female investigator with a job typically associated with males (geologic field work is demanding and strenuous), but the marriage works and readers are instantly immersed in the protagonist of Alex and her already-difficult job even before a perp rears his ugly head: “Eyes tightly shut, she clenched her sleeping bag tight beneath her chin. Massive boughs shook as the high-speed downdraft lashed at towering evergreens that lined the lower reaches of the steep rock face. The rattle of thousands of aspen leaves whipped into frenzied movement betrayed the wind’s push across the valley floor.”
Through this opener’s example it’s easy to see that Thirst promises to not just describe setting, action and adventure; but plunges readers into a ‘you are here’ experience that is profoundly captivating. Thirst not only goes where other detective/thrillers fall short; it provides a rivetingly absorbing story line that’s hard to put down.
The life of a geologist involves many rules and Alex has not only cultivated this lifestyle, but built more rules for her own psyche which have served her well – but which are broken as she embarks on her incredible journey: “Why am I doing this?” she said aloud. “Because you didn’t follow your own rule. Don’t get involved. Don’t volunteer. How many times will I ignore my own good advice?”
As she and sidekick Neil investigate further, all her training and skills leap to the forefront to track down not ores and mines, but a dangerous killer. And when she’s forced to take the ultimate steps to protect herself and those around her, she may face the courtroom over a deadly scheme that threatens millions.
Lethal encounters. Dangerous defenses. Bombings and Homeland Security: all are out of range of the usual geologist’s field work. But Alex is no usual geologist, and Thirst is no usual mystery. Detective readers will find it a compelling, involving read.
Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review