A murderer taps exotic biotech know-how to kill a billionaire and a passel of his heirs. Does greed fuel the killing spree or is it something more sinister? Visiting her crusty 79-year-old aunt in northern Iowa, Marley Clark tries to save a billionaire when he tumbles from an excursion boat captained by Marley's cousin. But the victim-founder of a biotech empire-is dead before his body hits the water. Soon Marley is consoling the widow, an old college friend and prime murder suspect. As Marley becomes embroiled in the investigation, members of the tycoon's family perish faster than overripe fruit, and the arrogant head of a security firm renews a vendetta. Once the murder spree is linked to biological weapons, Marley's former Pentagon boss joins the probe. To unmask the villains and protect her kin, Marley taps homegrown resources and debates the wisdom of trusting a handsome attorney with a suspicious past and a killer smile.
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My review of "No Wake Zone" by Linda Lovely was published in Audiobook Monthly Magazine! Like Dream Student by J.J. DiBenedetto my review was featured in Volume 2 of this wonderful new magazine.
And here is my review of "No Wake Zone":
"In the nearer term, I think various developments in biotechnology and synthetic biology are quite disconcerting. We are gaining the ability to create designer pathogens, and there are these blueprints of various disease organisms that are in the public domain – you can download the gene sequence for smallpox or the 1918 flu virus from the Internet." -Nick Bostrom
"Jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire." – Solomon Ibn Gabirol
Marley is more than ready for a vacation. After her adventures in "Dear Killer", the first in the Marley Clark mystery series, going home to visit her 79-year-old feisty aunt May and her much-loved cousin Ross in small-town Iowa seems just the thing to relax. Boy, has Marley got it wrong.
Volunteering at the last-minute to waitress for Cousin Ross on his double-decker excursion boat, “The Queen”, Marley is surprised to find that the wedding reception for local billionaire Jake Olsen is to celebrate his marriage to her best friend from college, Darlene Sherbert. But the surprises don’t stop there as Marley witnesses Jake flying over the stern of the Queen and into the icy Okoboji lake waters. Diving to the rescue Marley, a 52-year-old retired Army colonel, finds herself not thanked for her attempted rescue, but instead relegated to leading the suspect list. What’s a retired Army intelligence officer to do, but investigate?
Convoluted, vicious family battles over the will lead police on a wild chase, as family members drop dead one after the other. Things get worse when one of Marley’s old enemies, Quentin Hamilton, arrives on the scene. Tasked with protecting not only Jake, but also his biotech empire, losing his client is sure to drive Hamilton wild. And who better to subject to his ire than Marley, whose recommendation he believes cost Hamilton an important military contract?
While furiously jealous heirs brawling over a billion dollar inheritance seems the most logical reason for bodies falling left, right, and sideways, all is not as it seems. For the situation is much direr than first assumed. Jake’s firm conducts biological materials research for the military – and missing materials are killing the heirs.
"Our conversation veered to the topic of scientific advances and their potential for good or evil."
With help from her cousin Ross, her former Pentagon boss, General Irvine, and FBI agent Sherry Weaver, Marley must help find the murderer before more die, and before the biologicals originally meant to save lives instead slaughter millions. At the same time Marley must protect her aunt, while also enjoying a blooming relationship with local attorney Duncan James.
What happens, and why, makes for an edge-of-your seat thrill ride which will keep you guessing. Linda Lovely balances suspense and thrills with a strong theme of family, both the good aspects and the bad. Marley is one of my new favorite heroines. Sure, she is a retiree, but she is still a vivacious and active woman, with a healthy sex drive to boot. Marley, all of us “Boomer Ladies” salute you! __________________________________ I received No Wake Zone from the author via Audiobook Monthly in return for my honest review. As you can tell, I enjoyed the book immensely. I have spent hundreds of hours enjoying audio books, from literary classics like "Frankenstein" and "Little Women" to modern stories of the quirky, the romantic, the terrifying and everything in between. What is not to like? I can listen to my books while doing other things such as quilting or knitting, or even working in my flower beds. Or I can simply curl up in a chair with a quilt and a cup of tea, close my eyes, and enter a new and wonderful world.
The pleasure of an exceptional narrator can add further levels of enjoyment, actually making me part of the story. Sadly, the narrator for "No Wake Zone" falls into the “not as pleasurable” zone for this reader, however this is solely a case of personal preference.
Overall, I truly enjoyed Linda Lovely’s No Wake Zone and have purchased "Dear Killer" the first in the Marley Clark series. However, I purchased the electronic version rather than the Audible edition to increase my reading pleasure. I will also be watching closely for Ms. Lovely’s next Marley Clark adventure, "With Neighbors Like These."
I received No Wake Zone from Susan Keefe, CEO of Audiobook Monthly in return for a realistic review for her magazine. All thoughts are my own.
Check out the Linda’s commentary on Audiobookmonthly (dot) com ++++++++++++++++++ Author Information:
A native of Iowa, Linda Lovely has called the South home for more than thirty years. She lives with her husband beside a peaceful South Carolina lake, where she regularly perturbs the geese and one honking big turtle by jumping off her dock for a swim or pedaling (yes, pedaling not paddling) her kayak.
Linda is a member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers, and the South Carolina Writers Workshop. She feels quite lucky to have found both close friends and exceptional critique partners—snarky, funny, talented and generous—through these writer organizations.
If you could sum up No Wake Zone in three words, what would they be?
Fun, enjoy the character especially because she is older and still has spunk and sex appeal. She is intelligent yet she still gets herself into crazy predicaments.
What about KC Cowan’s performance did you like?
good performance, keeps the action interesting
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
no, I enjoy listening in small doses.
Any additional comments?
Much better than the Stephanie Plum books, geared to older women. Character still gets herself in a pickle but she comes out on the right side. Entertaining. Plan on listening to more of this series and have recommended it to female friends.