Saturday, August 3, 2013


Alex Kava's thriller, Stranded takes us to a place many Americans have been, the highway rest stop. This is the place you stop when the road has gotten too long and you are a little weary. Perhaps you are almost home; you just need to make one more stop, get another jolt of caffeine and you can sleep in your bed in an hour or two. There's nothing too scary about a rest stop, well sometimes they are not very clean and if you are alone and it's dark you may hurry into the building and race back to your car. It's not that the rest area is not safe; but it can be just a little scary.

Alex Kava plays on that fear. What happens if the rest stop is not a safe haven? What happens when you stop and a stranger needs help? After you decide to help you realize you should never have rolled down your window. It's then you realize you have made the biggest mistake of your life. You are stranded and you don't have a prayer of a chance. 

In Stranded a cunning serial killer preys on unsuspecting travelers and forces them into a game of life or death. He naturally stacks the deck in his favor and no matter what choice they make they are bound to lose. While dumping a body he becomes fascinated by FBI Agent Maggie O'Dell and deems her to be a worthy adversary. Thus begins the game, only Maggie does not realize she is playing right into his hand.

This is the first Maggie O'Dell story I have read. I thoroughly enjoyed the characters; their backstories and interaction together.  It is a wonderful story for the beach and daylight reading. I am not sure I would recommend it for reading as you drive to your next destination but if you do and have to stop at a rest area, lock your doors and don't talk to strangers.

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