Title: Saving Paradise by Mike Bond
Publisher: Mandevilla Press
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Length: 302 pages
Book Rating: C+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publicist
When a beautiful journalist drowns mysteriously in Honolulu Bay, former Special Forces veteran Pono Hawkins, now a well-known Hawaii surfer and international correspondent for surfing magazines, soon gets embroiled in trying to find why she died. What he learns quickly makes him a target for murder or life in prison as a cabal of powerful corporations, foreign killers and crooked politicians turns the blame on him.
Haunted by memories of Afghanistan, and determined to protect the Hawaii he loves from dirty politics tied to huge destructive energy developments, Pono turns to Special Forces buddies and his own skills to fight his deadly enemies, trying both to save himself and find her killers.
Alive with the sights, sounds and history of Hawaii, Saving Paradise is also a deeply rich portrait of what Pono calls “the seamy side of paradise”, and an exciting thriller of politics, lies and remorseless murder.
Mike Bond’s Saving Paradise is a complex murder mystery about political and corporate greed and corruption. This convoluted mystery has a vast list of suspects with motive to kill journalist Sylvia Gordon. Pono Hawkins is relentless in his search for her killer and with billions of dollars at stake he is soon the target of ruthless businessmen and politicians who will stop at nothing to protect their lucrative wind power deal.
Pono Hawkins is a very likable and engaging protagonist. He has nothing to gain or lose by uncovering Sylvia’s murderer and he is investigating her death because it is the right thing to do. In over his head, Pono stumbles around blindly for much of the novel until he unwittingly uncovers a far reaching web of deceit and corruption that includes the governor’s office, the local electric company, Hong Kong businessmen and the company brokering the wind turbine deal.
While the overall mystery is interesting and quite intriguing, the plot is slow moving for much of the novel. There is a strong environmental theme to the story that quickly becomes redundant and repetitive as it is repeated ad nauseum by Pono and various characters. While I had no trouble keeping up with major characters, characters with minor roles are numerous and difficult to keep track of.
Mike Bond’s vivid descriptions of Hawaii bring Saving Paradise vibrantly to life. The plot is unique and the environmental aspect of the storyline is thought-provoking and informative. The story’s twists and turns will keep you guessing the killer’s identity right up until the very end.
All in all, a very entertaining novel that mystery lovers will enjoy.
Bestselling author, advisor to the US and foreign governments, human rights and war correspondent, award-winning poet and international energy expert, Mike Bond has lived and worked in over thirty countries on six continents. His works have been translated into many languages and have been praised by critics on both sides of the Atlantic for their intricate plots, fascinating characters, extraordinary settings, and explosive pace.Based on his own experiences in dangerous, remote, and war-torn regions, his novels look deeply into the dark side of man as well as the good. They depict the terror and fury of battle and the intense joy of love, the vanishing beauty of the natural world, and the nature of the universe and its many meanings for human life.
His lean unsentimental raw prose, free of best-seller formulas and literary pretension, conveys through the lives of real people what it means to be deeply alive, to hunger for a better world.How do we live, his books ask, at the deepest level? In what ways does evil masquerade as good? What are politics, government, and intelligence behind their many masks? What are the secrets behind the international deals, dirty wars, assassinations, and coups? What are the stories that have never been told? How does one lead a good life and care for others in a world of danger and evil?Dealing with political truths few else discuss, Mike Bond’s books have been widely quoted by military experts, intelligence analysts, and political thinkers. They put us at the deepest level into real places, covering the most significant issues of our time in exciting stories of the real people who live them.
Visit Mr. Bond’s website HERE.