Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Running Dark-Jamie Freveletti

Running Dark
Jamie Freveletti
Morrow, Jun 29 2010, $24.99
ISBN: 9780061684241

Running the South African Comrades Ultramarathon, thirtyish chemist Emma Caldridge passes the fifty-eighth kilometer of the eighty-nine kilometer mile race when a nearby car bomb detonates. The explosion throws her ten feet in the air and out of her running shoes. A runner with a silver necklace shaped like an antelope stops to jab her with a needle before he races away. Emma looks around to see other dazed runners, notices the bad gash on her leg, but feeling a need to move that she assumes is partially caused by the drug injected into her, paranoid she puts on her sneakers and takes off at a pace way beyond anything she ever did before.

At the finish line, Emma asks Karen of Price Pharmaceutical to test her blood while also calling her friend Edward Banner, head of the American security firm Darkview, to advise her. He is in the Gulf of Aden working a Somali pirate abduction of the Kaiser Franz cruise ship filled with wealthy patrons and allegedly a new chemical weapon. Banner asks Emma to join him in order for them to sneak on board and identify this chemical weapon. She already reluctantly agrees when she learns she has a personal incentive as Cameron Sumner whom she worked with Running From The Devil is a hostage.

Over the top of the Drakensberg Mountains, Running Dark is an entertaining thriller that requires the reader to leave plausibility at the beginning of the ultramarathon. The story line is exciting and almost as fast as Emma runs the last thirty-one kilometers of the Comrades. Jamie Freveletti writes an action-packed African thriller as the Somali pirates and pharmaceutical misdeeds keep Emma and the reader hopping.

Harriet Klausner

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