by Cynthia Chow
Details on how to win a copy of Wild Storm at the end of this review.
Derek Storm carries a gun called Dirty Harry, can scale a building like Spider-Man, and fix an airplane with tape, midflght, on the wing. He’s a man of the new millennium, so even though Derek Storm may be a sucker for a pretty face, he respects women too much to be a love ’em and leave ’em Lothario. That doesn’t mean, of course, his hormones won’t tempt him when his instincts should warn him.
Storm, a former private investigator, works undercover for a secretive government agency within the CIA. It’s a branch so mysterious that no one in the CIA even knows where National Clandestine Service is located. That’s just how the Head of Internal Division Enforcement (yes, that is H.I.D.E.) Jebediah Jones wants it. He’s a Company man, loyal only to his agency. When four airplanes are literally cut out of the sky, the task of retrieving the weapon and finding out who is responsible (in that order), goes to Derek. Storm has to meet a billionairess on a floating fortress of a yacht as he rushes to free a captured scientist and save the world.
Fans of ABC’s Castle know that Derek Storm is the avatar of the television show’s fictional author Richard Castle. It’s not too surprising Storm is described as being fashionable, rakish, and with the magnetic charm to attract every flight attendant in his vicinity. It goes without saying he is ruggishly handsome. Storm cracks Star Wars jokes while targeted by F-16s, has friends around the globe, a code of conduct that limits collateral damage and gives him an awareness of innocent bystanders. Storm is completely thrown off balance by the reappearance of Clara Strike, the CIA agent who brought him into the agency, broke his heart when she faked her death, and still confounds his emotions.
In the tradition of James Bond, the action is over-the-top, weapons are as exotic and expensive as the locations, and an archeologist is unsubtly named Kate Comely. An evil businessman of course owns a massive aquarium with a predatory moray eel, and during an interrogation Storm conducts a unique form of waterboarding. The action moves at breakneck speed, with double- and triple- crosses, and seductive femme fatales, but with a wink to let the reader know the author is in on the joke.
While Wild Storm stands on its own as a fun espionage thriller, it’s impossible not to read this second in the full novel series without linking it to the Castle television show. When Derek’s father is described as bearing a striking resemblance to James Brolin, fans will remember the actor played Richard’s father on the show. The idealized Carl Storm is all the more touching as a former FBI agent who provides fatherly support and wisdom along with his considerable investigative skills. There’s even a nod to Jameson Rook, the hero of Richard Castle’s Nikki Heat series, fans will also enjoy. Readers of thrillers will enjoy this novel. Fans of the show will truly appreciate the light-hearted humor, cocky one-liners, and admiration for a strong and capable woman. This is less of a parody and more of an homage to celebrate the best parts of indulgent, excessive, and always exciting espionage thrillers.
To enter to win a copy of Wild Storm, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “Wild,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen August 9, 2014. U.S. residents only.
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