James Hall, a former art critic of the Guardian, was awarded the first Bernard Denvir Prize for an outstanding young critic. He is the author of 20 novels, 14 of which feature Thorn, the off-the-grid loner who lives a primitive existence in Key Largo, Florida. Thorn and his friend Sugarman, an African-American PI, team up to solve exotic crimes from animal smuggling to piracy to kidnapping to espionage. Hall has won the Edgar Award and the Shamus and several of his novels have been optioned for film.
Hall's enigmatic hero, Thorn, was last seen parrying poachers in the best-selling Gone Wild (LJ 2/15/95). Now, he finds himself on a cruise ship with a cunning terrorist who plans on blowing the boat out of the water‘along with a good chunk of Florida coastline.
"Hall's Best Suspenser Yet!"
"A page-turning action thriller. . . will leave readers
--Ann Arbor News "Powerful."
--The Atlanta Journal-Constitution "A slick, action-packed read."
--Phillip Margolin, author of After Dark "Jim Hall is brilliant and Buzz Cut proves it."
--Robert B. Parker, author of All Our Yesterdays "Another Winner!"
--Library Journal "Spectacular action."
--Publishers Weekly "We'd best accept the inevitable: Hall's ship has come in."
A poet as well as a thriller writer, Hall (Gone Wild, etc.) brings an ear for language and an eye for the evocative detail, for the surge of meaning within sound and surface, to his latest‘which features his customary hero, the moody, middle-aged Thorn. Reuniting with Thorn here is his old friend Sugarman (last seen in Mean High Tide). Bizarre family dysfunction and impending ecological disaster prove familiar but still effective Hall motifs as Sugar signs on as head of security for a billion-dollar Miami-based cruise ship line and Thorn encounters an unusually chilling adversary. Sugar's task is to catch a chimerical murderer whose victims all have some relationship to the company's gambling flagship, the M.S. Eclipse, from which the criminal has been stealing $50,000 per month. Danger promptly surfaces, as Sugar is nearly killed by the psychopathic Butler Jack, who has stun-gun electrodes attached to his fingertips and who plans to hold the Eclipse and its passengers hostage for a king's ransom. Jack also has designs on Monica Sampson, the long-missing daughter of the cruise line's owner, but Thorn, who winds up aboard the ship along with Sugar, casts eyes toward this young beauty as well. Murder, techno-wizardry and plenty of sexual tension ignite into spectacular action as Jack sets the ship on a collision course toward an oil-laden supertanker off Miami's South Beach. The title is right on; this thriller will slice readers' sleep into slivers. (July)