The Fire Ship (Richard Mariner, #2) Peter Tonkin



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The Fire Ship (Richard Mariner, #2)  by  Peter Tonkin

The Fire Ship (Richard Mariner, #2) by Peter Tonkin
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The Fire Ship by Peter Tonkin is the second book of the Richard Mariner action thriller series, set on the high seas in the late twentieth century. Richard Mariner and his wife Robin are enjoying a vacation together on the Katapult, a new and experimental sailboat, in the Indian Ocean. They encounter a burning ship in shark-infested waters.

Ever curious and sympathetic, they board the ship in case anyone needs rescue. The ship is curiously without identification, certainly without survivors, and they narrowly escape its final explosion and shipwreck. From the “fire ship” they proceed into a horrific storm that damages their vessel, including the communication system.

So they don’t learn until later that the flagship of their company, Prometheus II of the Heritage Mariner tanker fleet, has been hijacked by terrorists in the Gulf. Meanwhile in England, Bill Heritage learns his flagship has been taken and that his daughter Robin and her husband, his business partner, have lost all communication. He flies to Bahrain, where he is promptly kidnapped by terrorists.The book’s fast-paced chapters alternate between exciting plot lines around the world. The Heritage Mariner company executives call in favors from government, diplomatic ties and political allies.

Richard and Robin redirect the Katapult from a pleasure cruise to the Gulf, and hunt for the Prometheus in person. They craft a daring plot to save the hijacked ship’s crew. They team up with their new friends Sam Hood and Doc Weary, crew members/owners of the Katapult, plus old trusted friends from their previous adventure (The Coffin Ship).

Nothing goes exactly as planned – every move reveals hidden danger. This is a gripping, compulsive page-turner that would make a thrilling movie, populated by fascinating characters with complex personalities. If I hadn’t been so caught up in the suspense, I might have pulled out maps to follow their journey. A reader with nautical knowledge and hands-on experience would likely get even more enjoyment from the detailed descriptions at sea.

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