Genre: romantic suspense
This book was first published as a Kindle Serial. Kindle Serials are stories published in episodes, with future episodes delivered at no additional cost.
From award-winning author Susannah Sandlin comes a heart-pounding romantic thriller that pits a quick-witted scientist and a scarred ex - combat diver against a ruthless billionaire treasure hunter with ties to the White House.
When biologist Gillian Campbell makes an offhand comment about a family curse during a TV interview, she has no idea what her words will set in motion. Within days, Gillian finds herself at the mercy of a member of the C7, a secretive international group of power brokers with a dangerous game: competing to find the world's most elusive treasures, no matter the cost, in money or in lives. To save her family, Gillian teams up with Shane Burke, a former elite diver who's lost his way, navigating the brutal "death coast" of the North Atlantic to find what the collector seeks: the legendary Ruby Cross of the Knights Templar, stolen by Gillian's ancestor and lost at sea four hundred years ago.
It has been three months since I read this book, and I still have not managed to write a review about it. And I am so very sorry that my addiction to Hay Day has kept me from writing a nice one, as I did enjoy this book a lot. I really look forward to reading book 2, as Susannah Sandlin has written a really bad bad guy, and I look forward to see him getting what he deserves eventually.
I really do love treasure hunt books, I used to devour Clive Cussler’s books, and I love Cherry Adair’s Cutter Cay series as well. So a new series in this genre is very welcome to me. Yes, I am also a big fan of Indiana Jones, there are many more books than movies about him and his adventures. I’ve read those in Dutch in my teens.
Gillian Campbell finds herself blackmailed into giving up her life, to go on a wild goose chase treasure hunt. What are the chances she can find the Templar’s Cross her ancestor supposedly stole 400 years ago? If she does not comply however, her little niece will be killed. As her only friend has been put in the hospital just to show her “they” mean business, she believes it. The worst part is, she has only one month to accomplish the hunt, and then she will die. And her loved ones with her.
Shane Burke is another victim of the blackmailer, and although he is promised a lot of money, turning it down is not an option. And so Shane, Gillian, and Shane’s friends embark on a treasure hunt, trying to find clues to where the ship has sunk in the North Atlantic, and getting experience in diving in those treacherous and cold waters. The pressure gets heavier and heavier when they don’t make progress fast enough to the likes of the bad guy. Friends get hurt and kidnapped, but Shane and Gillian are closing in on finding out who is behind this all. It has to be someone very high up to know so much and so fast ...
It took me a while to warm up to both Gillian and Shane. They have both had some traumatic events in their lives, and have closed down because of it. It made me understand them a bit more when it was explained. Though this book has been published as a serial novel, it is not riddled with cliffhangers at the end of each chapter. It is fast paced, a lot of things keep happening, things you really don’t see coming.
It takes a while for Gillian and Shane to trust each other with their stories. They are both closed people, but they are very much attracted to each other and living in close conditions on Shane’s boat, means they are spending a lot of time together. Of course Shane wants to leave Gillian behind if he gets the chance, but Gillian (and her dog) are smarter than that and hide away aboard. The dog doesn’t really like Shane and those scenes are fun. It is not a little dog either ...
I do like that Gillian is not a shrinking violet, she can certainly hold her own. She is a professional alligator wrestler, hunting dangerous animals, catching them, and either killing them or releasing them in the wild, far away from human villages. She is also a diver, and she is determined to help Shane with the work. She just is not accustomed to diving in the dark cold water of the North Atlantic. As a former marine diver, Shane has experience enough. He just has to deal with the ghosts of his past first.
There is of course a lot of action in this book, but there is also time for humor and some nice love scenes between Gillian and Shane. The ending was certainly surprising, I did enjoy that a lot. I look forward to book 2 in the series.
Suzanne Johnson/Susannah Sandlin is one of the very few authors whose books I buy in trade paperback, as I really do like her writing style. So far I have enjoyed three different series and some short stories by her. And of course she is a very nice and generous person who is fun to follow on Social Media and her own website / blog.
© 2014 Reviews by Aurian