THRILLERS are supposed to be fast-paced, edge of the seat page turners but now-a-days many coffee table books are masquerading as “thrillers”. Those in Peril by Wilbur smith is not one such book.
The novel’s hero is Major Hector Cross, ex-SAS operative, veteran soldier, ace marksman, and a consummate military genius. As the owner of Crossbow Securities he gives his services to Henry Bannok, owner of Bannok Oil Corp. When Henry dies Hector gets a new boss, Henry’s wife, Hazel. Hazel is an ex-tennis champion, an accomplished business woman and every bit of a hard ass as Hector is. Their boss– employee relationship gets off to a rough start as Hazel has her reservations about Hector. But when Hazel’s daughter Cayla is kidnapped, tortured and held for a ransom so obnoxious that Hazel can’t pay, her only hope lies with Hector. And to make things worse, the kidnappers are Somali pirates, who are protected by international bureaucracy and the life of their precious hostage Cayla. And then the whole thing takes a turn for the worse when the reconnaissance mission soon spirals off into a full-fledged blood feud.
Those in Peril is a thriller by just about any definition of the term. But that said it isn’t abhorrent or gun-ho. While it is adrenaline charged, Smith has also added other elements that go to make a good novel. Money, sex, betrayal. This book has it all. So if you are up for some light yet ravishing read you really won’t go wrong with Wilbur Smith’s Those in peril.
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