4.0 out of 5 stars
Thriller, February 18, 2013
Adventure: cons, thieves, archeologists; temptation and redemption February 18, 2013
By Jim Bennett
As always, don't let the star count decide for you. Borg uses "thriller" to describe this work, and it does not disappoint. You will meet some of the key characters in the opening chapter. If you've followed Edward Guernsey-Crock before, you'll soon meet him again, even more of an `adventurer', and even more of a smoothie, in this tale. The cast of characters includes Americans, Egyptians, Turks, and others. There is some sailing technology and terminology, and I found all of it (to my limited knowledge, augmented by Google!) to be correct. There is a bit of science, more archeology, Egyptian treasures, and even a mix-in of superstition/belief. There is a sort-of love story as well, which drives its characters to rethink their life positions. There is rivalry and sexual tension. There are criminals and danger, risks and choices.
If I had to make tiny carps, they would be these: not all chapters are at the same level of tension, perhaps a good thing. The opening chapter has a lot of background to fill in, so we can excuse Borg for providing us with a slightly higher information-to-suspense ratio than the majority of the book. Occasionally an additional sentence or word could have been omitted, as in `inappropriate rudeness'. These are indeed tiny carps; the writing is nicely done, often literary. Borg tends to describe in more detail than some more terse, `modern' writing, as this is her style. You will be aware of dress, eye colour, building shape, and character habits. Engaging.
The complex plot unravels in parallel stories toward their multiple collisions and resolution. The major climactic scenes (at least three, imho, and no spoilers here) are set up with Borg's usual cleverness. (See `Edward, Con Extraordinaire'; and Journey to Kiev in `Moments of the Heart', for other examples of Borg's deft setting up of key scenes.) Important details `just happen' and you are there, because they occur in a background which makes them reasonable, almost inevitable. This is fiction writing at a high level. You will feel for the heroine, and sympathize with the other chief protagonist. The story takes place during the Egyptian revolution, which is woven into the tale and forms part of its drama and background. And there is a sirocco. This is not a trivial story, and it is definitely an enjoyable read. You may, as I did, reread it more than once, simply for pleasure.
Why four stars? This is one reviewer's opinion. In an `official' KBR review, five stars is `best in genre or equal,' and rarely given. Your personal pleasure may vary. In Sirocco, Borg has created a work that is a real page-turner.
Jim Bennett, Kindle Book Review Team member.
(Note: this reviewer received a free copy of this book for an independent review. He is not associated with the author or Amazon.)