Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Dark Tide-Andrew Gross

The Dark Tide
Andrew Gross
Morrow, Mar 2008, $25.95
ISBN: 9780061143427

Charles and Karen Friedman have been married for eighteen years but are still in love. They live in a fine house, have a rustic cabin in Vermont, and take vacations in the Caribbean. One day Charles takes the train to work; Karen hears on TV news that a train was blown up in Grand Central Station; hundreds die including Charlie who was on that train.

While Karen and their kids mourn their loss, two men visit her; telling her that two hundred and fifty million dollars of investment money is missing. To her shock she learns these men are not only on the wrong side of the law, but her Charlie worked with them. Her daughter is given a warning that they better return the money or else. Karen knows she must find out what Charlie was into and neutralize the threat somehow. She receives help from Greenwich Police Detective Ty Hauck; they met when Charlie’s name and phone number appeared on a paper held by a victim of a hit and run. They begin to uncover Charlie’s darks secrets with each one making Karen wonder how little she knew her late mate.

With his second solo effort (see THE BLUE ZONE), Andrew Gross establishes himself as a rising star in the thriller genre. Although there is non-stop action from the moment of the train disaster, the key players are fully developed so that the audience feels they know them; most fascinating is Charlie who readers, empathizing with Karen, think we know him but each time a new revelation surfaces telling the audience we don’t know him at all. Karen is a person determined to learn the truth about Charlie although each new disclosure huts her soul; though a romantic subplot seems a bit off, Hauck feels that with her love he is coming back to life having had a personal tragedy to deal with.

Harriet Klausner