A high seas thrill ride.
You can smell the smoke of pirate fires and feel the swampy heat of the Florida coast. Your fingers will twitch with a longing for adventure and it may take you a few chapters to get your sea legs.
In "Bad Latitude," Dave Ebright has written a novel reminiscent of the Hardy Boys mysteries that enthralled you as a kid. Only Ebright's debut novel comes with an extra edge. It's written for kids but that does not diminish the impact it has on the adult reader.
The mark of a good book can be discerned in the depth of feeling a reader develops for characters on the page. Here is Ebright's achievement, shining like gold coins in the sun. The main players in "Bad Latitude" are characters you will come to love or hate. You will scream at them not to climb the stairs of that spooky lighthouse. You will cheer for them as they overcome no end of ghouls and rattlesnakes on their way to the gold.
"Bad Latitude" is a treasure chest crammed full of adventure, a high seas thrill ride with twists as unpredictable as weather off the Florida coast. Two teenagers and their friends go for the island treasure with the help of a wise and patient grandfather. But the treasure is protected by a tribe of long dead native guards who have no intention of turning over the loot.
The ambition of young adults meets the commitment of ancient warriors and the battle is not an easy one for either side.
"Bad Latitude" is a gem and Ebright a clever new novelist worth keeping an eye on. That one good eye without the pirate's patch, anyway.
- Mark Laflamme, www.marklaflamme.com