Who does not like an edge of your seat thriller which is jammed packed with unremitting action and adventure? A story which effectively employs suspense and mystery and bundles it all together into an intricate plot. Sound enticing? Well, when you add in espionage and present a falsely accused hero who has all the odds stacked against him… you have a clear winner on your hands. If this sounds like the type of story which would captivate and enthrall you, then Hunting Savage by Dave Edlund is a superb choice!
To provide a decent summary of Hunting Savage without revealing too much of the plot is a delicate balance to be sure. However, the story essentially uses a mysterious historical incident from the past as a catalyst. In 1967, there was a deadly Israeli attack on a U.S. Navy ship by the name of Liberty. The ship and crew were decimated in the attack. Now, many decades later, a hacker has uncovered files about this deadly attack and the true motivations behind it. Whether this incident happened long ago or not, somebody at a very high level does not want this information revealed and will do anything necessary to prevent that from happening. Enter our hero, Peter Savage.
When two murders are committed using weapons manufactured by Peter Savage’s company, he becomes entwined within the mystery. When his own detective work provides him with information about the decades old Liberty incident, Peter becomes a marked man. Targeted by assassins, police, FBI and a Mossad Commando team, Peter retreats to the Cascade Mountains in the Oregon wilderness to make his last stand. Tracked by his ever-mounting enemies, Peter will become hunter and the hunted as he uses his familiarity with the area to his advantage. Will he survive and uncover the truth? Or will he be buried with it?
There can be little doubt that Hunting Savage has top-notch plot development. It is exciting, suspenseful and entirely engrossing. There really does not seem to be any “slow” parts. Also, the author has obviously done his research before writing this book. His knowledge of weapons and the setting in the story is thorough and impressive. The entire story would fall flat without such accurate insight. There are also many political components which contribute to the overall plot as well. These are based upon historical events and provide the required elements of mystery and intrigue which make this story so engaging. Lastly, Dave Edlund understands how to engage the reader by stimulating their emotions. By having Pter accompanied by his dog and trusted companion Diesel, the reader is even further drawn into the tale. The powerful bond between human and dog is explored as the reader chews on their nails and roots for Diesel to survive this deadly experience.
The character development in this story is quite impressive as well. There are a variety of support characters who are sufficiently developed so that we are able to gain an accurate understanding into their various motivations. However, the characters who are developed in the most detail are Peter and Nadya. The growth of both of these characters throughout the story is impressive. While they are shown to have very heroic qualities, their individual flaws are evident as well. They do not come across as stereotypical “heroes” who can do not wrong. They have their individual strengths and needs and as such are very human and identifiable. Traits that will once again pull in the reader.
Overall, this is a “top tier” thriller. It has all the political mystery, action, suspense and adventure that any thriller fan could wish for. It is also intelligently supported by intricate details and perfectly flowing prose. Obviously, due to the nature of the novel there are violent scenes and as such is recommended for an adult audience. However, the recommendation is emphatic and unequivocal!
5 out of 5 Electrifying Stars for this one!