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The Night Charter by Sam Hawken

The Night Charter

by Sam Hawken

Quick take

Trouble is headed Camaro's way – and more than anything, I wanted to be along for the ride.

Why I love it

I was hooked from the first paragraph of The Night Charter – and not just because heroine Camaro Espinoza runs a fishing boat out of Miami. Who can walk away from an ex-army medic named after a '60s dream car, and who not only rides a Harley but drives a pick-up and handles her fifty-nine foot Custom Carolina with ease? Yes, Camaro might be on the lam for killing five men, but I had the feeling from the get-go that they might have deserved it. Now all she wants to do is lie low and let life flow around her, leaving her past in the past and worrying as little as possible about the future. But trouble is headed Camaro's way – and more than anything, I wanted to be along for the ride.

The Night Charter meets every expectation and more, bringing thrills and chills with multiple twists and turns. There is a supporting cast so engaging you're drawn deeply into the drama: Cuban exiles in Miami charting a course for revenge, low-life punks getting in the mix, and one hapless sucker who falls into the mess, endangering his innocent daughter. And then, of course, there is the rumpled yet dogged police detective on the case.

No damsels in distress for me, no weak-kneed, lily-livered sweethearts: I like my literary women to be strong-willed, courageous, smart, and rebellious. And Camaro doesn't disappoint. Tight-lipped and strong-muscled, and of course with a heart of gold, she has a mind as sharp as her left uppercut, but can she slice through all the crap and get the job done?

I was hanging on by my fingernails for an answer to that question, following her every move with my heart in my throat. Camaro is a fascinating and compelling woman, who you can't help but root for. The ending was fabulous, a fantastic climatic showdown – and, happily for all of us, the set-up for more Camaro adventures to come. I cannot wait.

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