April 9, 2016

Review: Turbulence: Career, Drugs, Sex; Intertwined, by Edward MacMillan


Title: Turbulence: Career, Drugs, Sex; Intertwined

Author: Edward MacMillan

Publisher: Self-published

Date of Publication: 2015

Number of Pages: 218

Disclaimer: The author provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much!

Summary

Hotel executive Kevin Logan was the unsuspecting victim of a Mexican cartel's plot to test a diabolical distribution program using the airline baggage system to smuggle hard drugs into the United States. Discovering this plan by accidentally intercepting his forwarded baggage originally intended for a flight to Asia, Kevin chose to forego law enforcement notification and store the drugs while he continued his travel assignment that was deadline oriented and fraught with consequences to his company and his career. That decision set off a global drug chase halfway around the world threatening him and others, including a romantic interest that became entangled in the chase.

The tale, set in the nineteen seventies, before personal computers, cell phones, the internet and Homeland Security, provided minimum communication tools, but especially, an ability to cope using his experience and wits. Saddled with a stash of drugs worth near a street value of a million dollars, and a criminal enterprise desperate to silence their distribution plans, only that combination of experience and wits, aided by the love of a beautiful woman, could give him any chance of survival.

Review

It's been a while since I read a thriller, a story that would keep me at the edge of my seat and fill me with adrenaline. Well, none of this happened while reading Turbulence.

First of all, the plot started off quite interestingly. Kevin Logan was a hotel executive, who discovered in his luggage some carefully packaged drugs along with a tracking device. Because he had some urgent business matters, he hid the drugs and left the device in the house of a random flight attendant that he had just met and spent the night with. Then, until after the half of the book,  we followed him as he handled his business problems, which totally destroyed any suspense that has been created. Somehow, the storyline returned to the drugs, along with the action. The flight attendant, Alison, also returned to the plot because she had to bring the device to Kevin, and he decided out of nowhere that she was the love of his life. After this, the ending was anticlimactic and to be honest, I didn't really care much about the fate of Kevin and Alison.

The main problem with Turbulence was that the drugs were always in the background during the whole book. They were like a shadow in Kevin's life, that never posed to him a real danger. Instead on focusing on the action, we learnt what an amazing businessman Kevin was, how good looking he was, what an amazingly good lover he was, how many women he got, what luxuries he had, his workout routine, how he stayed in suites while traveling to the hotels he managed, how he traveled only first class, and the custom tuxes he had made. Seriously, I was fed up reading about how good looking, rich, smart, and generally awesome he was!

Furthermore, the romance in the novel came unnaturally and was forced. We never learnt anything about Alison to make us care about her. Kevin only spent a few hours with her, just like a one-night stand. After a couple of weeks that he contacted her, not only she was waiting for him, but he realised that she was the love of his life! How can she act like he is the best things that ever happened to her, only by spending some hours with him? And when they indeed met again, what did they do? Of course, they went on a date and had sex again and again. Meanwhile, the cartel was sending them warnings, but who cared about this little danger?

The story was set in the 1970's. This didn't really affect the story, except for the means of communication. Rather than using e-mail and mobile phones, Kevin used telephones, beepers, and fax. I only spotted a small anachronism: Kevin listened to some music on his CD player, a device that was first released in 1982. But this is just a minor thing.

I won't hide that Turbulence was a disappointment to me. Not only the action was minimum, the story didn't even focus on what it was supposed to be about. If you take the drugs out of the title, then you would have a better description of the novel. The flight had many turbulences.     

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