Saturday, August 02, 2008

The Unsung Hero - Suzanne Brockmann

Over on Dear Author, there was recently a post discussing Suzanne Brockmann's books and I thought her Troubleshooters series sounded interesting. Generally, books about Navy SEALs (and there are a lot of them out there) don't interest me at all and I give them a wide berth. But the points mentioned in the article, along with quotes, decided me to give the series a try. (Hooray for libraries!)

I did like this book. The best word I can come up with to describe my overall reaction is solid. This seems like a pathetic word, a real case of damning with faint praise, and I don't mean it like that at all. There was a real solidity to Brockmann's world building that made it seem extremely real. These were people you could believe you could meet out on the street; their actions and reactions, successes and mistakes felt real. And considering a number of them were highly trained and secretive soldiers in a field I know nothing about, that's saying something.

Brockmann easily juggled three main plot lines, one of which was sixty years old, and didn't let either of the secondary storylines suffer from either a lack of "on screen" time or take over the main romance plot. Add to that mix a terrorist on US soil (in a book written pre-9/11) that manages to provide a satisfying climax without taking over the book and you are left with clear evidence of a writer who knows what she's doing.

Tom and Kelly's romance was satisfying (if occasionally frustrating) and David and Mallory's secondary romance was a delight. Personally I was less taken with the World War II plot, although it was as well done as the rest of the book, the trips back in memory beautifully blended into the main story. All the characters were solid and interesting and I suspect I'll be reading more Brockmann in the future, although not immediately.

The Unsung Hero
Suzanne Brockmann
Troubleshooters, Book 1

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