Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Book Review: Polar Melt (Crime/ Thriller)

Polar Melt
Martin Roy Hill

Publisher:  32-32 North
Publication Date: 31st December 2018
Pages: 215
Format Read: eBook
Source: Courtesy of the author


 They call it simply "the object."

It sits at the bottom of the Arctic Ocean, waiting.

Waiting . . . for what?

An American research ship disappears in the Arctic's Chukchi Sea only to reappear a few days later. When a special U.S. Coast Guard unit boards the vessel, they find it deserted, its power grid wrecked, two bombs waiting to explode, and an even darker secret hidden below her decks.

A few miles across the international maritime boundary, a massive Russian oil platform harbors its own secret. Below the behemoth lies a mysterious energy source so powerful it threatens to topple the balance of world power in favor of Moscow.

The Russians will to kill to protect it. The Americans will kill to stop its recovery.

And still . . . the object waits.


Polar Melt is a political thriller set in an Arctic summer where the once permanent ice cap was at its lowest recorded ebb in history.

A research ship, the Franklin, built by the US Navy but under charter by an Oceanographic institute goes missing. All communication is lost.
The coast guard’s Deployable Specialised Force crew of six is sent to discover what happened to the Franklin crew. The team’s mission was to investigate mysterious occurrences at sea and whether whatever caused it still posed a threat to maritime traffic.

A separate crew of Marines is sent to salvage the ship but when it starts to look like the Franklin was sabotaged both crews begin to work together to find the saboteurs. The two crews encounter strange electrical failures and the line between real and imagined is blurred as mythology and unidentified submerged objects (unknown subsurface phenomena) play a role in the story. All the while the Russians are up to some shady business on an oil rig whilst they keep a close watch on the US ship and its occupants.
It is clear that Hill knows his subject as technical details and statistics of the ship and submarine are all explained for the layman.

The story quickly evolves from a mystery to a political thriller and the current political climate is used to create a highly feasible plot and an action packed story that would appeal to maritime enthusiasts and readers of political thrillers alike.

Hill’s characters are well developed, his plots are believable and he shows his readers, once again, his love for an explosive ending.

‘Strange and mysterious things happen at sea’

My rating 4/5  ⭐⭐⭐⭐

*This review is: 
Book 'P' in the AtoZ challenge 

Martin Roy Hill is an award-winning author of mystery thrillers and science fiction. All of his books are available from Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Martin spent more than 20 years as a staff reporter and editor for newspapers and magazines before becoming a military analyst specializing in battlefield medical operations for the Navy. His freelance credits include Reader's Digest, LIFE, Newsweek, Omni, American History, Aviation History, Coast Guard Magazine, Retired Officer Magazine, the Los Angeles Times Sunday Opinion Section, and many more.

Much of his freelance work involves historical topics, especially military history. He was a lead contributor to the 1995 WWII anthology, "From Pearl Harbor to Nagasaki: America at War," published by the Retired Officer Association (now called the Military Officer Association). He was also a contributor to the 2013 Civil War anthology, "Gettysburg: Three Days that Saved the United States," published by I-5 Publishing.

Martin served in the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve, the Navy Reserve and the California National Guard. He lives in San Diego, California, with his wife, Winke, son, Brandon, and their feline overseer, Harry.

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