Really 'terrific' book ...suspense suspense suspense. I liked all the characters and they were well-drawn. It is a very well-written sea-story. I read it in one sitting; believe THAT. It's about a married couple, both are physicians who travel in their sailboat (not exactly small) around the Pacific helping islanders.
In his first novel, professional seaman Paul Garrison creates characters who are unique and sympathetic, then puts them into situations full of believable peril. Fire and Ice starts with a knockout punch: we watch a man's whole world being stolen from him. Doctors Sarah and Michael Stone, along with their 10-year-old daughter Ronnie, seem to have an ideal life. He's an American, she's a Nigerian educated in England. They sail the rugged waters of the Pacific in their 38-foot hospital ship. Just as the Stones are about to check in at a remote atoll to see if anyone needs medical help, a giant liquefied-nitrogen-gas carrier nearby radios an S O S: its captain has been seriously injured in a fall. Michael spots an old man in distress on the atoll, so Sarah drops him off and heads for the carrier. Trying to help the dying man, Michael watches in terror as the carrier scoops up the hospital sailboat and steams away. Things get even more exciting as Michael chases the mysterious carrier and its ominous cargo to Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Tokyo--for a literally explosive finale.
From Publishers Weekly
Cover blurbs link this debut thriller to the recent nonfiction bestsellers Into Thin Air and The Perfect Storm, but its real ancestors are the expertly crafted nautical adventures of Hammond Innes. Like Innes, professional seaman Garrison creates characters who are unique and then puts them into situations full of believable peril. Do-gooder physicians Sarah and Michael Stone and their 10-year-old daughter, Ronnie, seem to have an ideal life: they sail the rugged waters of the Pacific in their hospital ship, "an elderly, sun-bleached 38-foot Nautor Swan," bringing medicine to islands off the trade routes. One day, just as they are about to put in at a remote atoll, a giant ship carrying liquefied nitrogen gas radios an SOS: its captain has been seriously injured in a fall. The doctors split up. Sarah drops Michael off and heads for the nearby carrier?which promptly scoops up the sailboat and steams away while Michael watches, helpless, from shore. After this smashing start, Garrison piles on even more empathy, action and suspense. On board the carrier, a gnarled, fascinating old China hand is suffering from botched surgery to remove a bullet. While Sarah works to keep him alive, his very nasty bodyguard uses violence to keep the crew?and Sarah and Ronnie?from finding out where the valuable, dangerous cargo is headed. Meanwhile, Michael repairs an islander's canoe and sails for Palau, where a friendly local politician discovers that Dr. Stone has a very good reason for not calling in the U.S. Navy to help him recover his wife, daughter and sailboat. Instead, Michael recruits a team of Chinese gangsters (and one stranded female American ex-cop) to go after the kidnappers in a fast-forward showdown that takes him to Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo. Garrison writes about these exotic people and places with immense vigor; it's no wonder that Disney has optioned the book for a cool million. Major ad/promo.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
For more than a decade, the world's oceans have been home to Michael and Sarah Stone and their young daughter Ronnie, who live aboard the sailing yacht Veronica, bringing medical care to remote islands. But their peaceful life is shattered when a medical distress call summons Sarah and Ronnie to a gargantuan commercial vessel lying still and ominous in the equatorial Pacific. Michael, left behind to tend to an ailing islander, watches with growing horror as Veronica is hauled on to the deck of the hulking metal behemoth and is carried away. Stranded and alone a thousand miles from civilization, with only a primitive canoe at his disposal and no navigatinal equipment except the stars, Michael Stone must now do the impossible. He must find his kidnapped family and rescue them from the clutches of a madman. And, unbeknownst to him, Sarah and Ronnie's are not the only lives at Stake...