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The Lucky Man – An Act of Malice

Recent release by Author, Monika Martyn

A Review by fellow author – Sir Peter James Dotcomé

The Lucky Man – An act of Malice is the work of Monika Martyn and the story is set in Hawaii and surrounds in contemporary times.

Monika says the story was inspired by a ‘beached whale in Mexico.’

About The Author

Monika is a cocktail of dynamic business achiever and an uncluttered free spirit!

In her teens she emigrated from Austria to Canada, where she achieved phenomenal success in the cosmetic industry, allowing her to retire young and now Monika enjoys a nomadic and minimalistic lifestyle with her Husband.

Apart from her life in Canada, Monika has lived in Panama, Colombia, Mexico, and Europe.

It is not difficult to appreciate that Monika would write a book like ‘The Lucky Man…’ given her life experience and especially her travels. There is more to this though. She mentioned in her blog post entitled “Uncomfortable”: “If you want to make anyone uncomfortable, simply tell them that you own nothing. In a second, their eyes roll slightly inward as they compute the idea of what ‘nothing’ could mean and that you must be joking: they’re waiting for the punchline that what you’re saying can’t imply the same nothing that means nothing.”

As Monika has spoken of herself in this way, we would be safe to surmise that she is essentially a ‘Free Spirit.’ One who delights herself in every nuance and essence of the life that surrounds her, and who finds unnecessary baggage stifling.

Given the above, Monika was more than qualified to write this exciting story.

Genre

The story is fiction, thriller, and has healthy helpings of action and adventure.

Story Flow

I read an e-manuscript of The lucky Man and found the story easy reading. If it were not for time constraints, I would have got through reading in a day. Through eighty per cent of the reading it was brisk and found me excited and intrigued. The other twenty percent, where Monika was dealing with describing the lesser important issues of story, it was slow, but never boring.

In Part Four “One Down,” the flow takes an abrupt ‘detour’ and I went through the next few chapters feeling cheated that I never found out what happened to Jack languishing in his canoe! However, “One Down” is very interesting in itself; introducing a new location and four additional characters, who at the time, were floating on a self-made raft and then returning to an Island where they had been shipwrecked for many years. They found an unconscious Jack in his canoe and I felt happy that I was connected to the main story once more.

Part four moved briskly with a brief interlude of sex in the ranks and a little under-radar planning by two of the characters, Rose, and Mark. The only link missing in Mark’s plan was a lack of suitable transport to affect it.

Jack’s arrival on the island saved his life and solved Mark’s transport issue.

With Marks’s departure and safe arrival in Mexico, he was able to initiate the rescue of the group on the island and this culminated in an assumed happy ending. I say assumed, because there is no detail provided about a joyous reunion with Jack and family, especially his distraught mother, or for that matter, the return of Kai’s beloved canoe, ‘Kilo.’(Boo-hoo, I’m such an emotional sucker.)

I was never on the ‘edge of my seat,’ but was hooked and had, by choice,  to keep reading.

The Plot

The plot was well thought out, but lacked sufficient tight twists, which might have savored the story with little more mystery. The characters were suitably chosen each fitting well into their parts. Sequence of events was seamless.

Characters

From my viewpoint there are, three primary characters: the Protagonist, Jack, Myra, Jack’s Mother and Kai The security Boss. A solid support cast consisting of: John, Jack’s Father, brother Michael, Brody, (Jack’s best buddy), Wayne, and Bruce, two thugs. Finally Mark, Ron and Rosie, the shipwrecked islanders, followed by a host of others in bit parts.

Monika gets kudos from me for her character portrayals.

Jack is a super athletic type, tall, handsome, raised with a silver spoon in his mouth. A strong personality whose exceptional looks caused him to magnetize all women. He struck me as well-meaning and generous, but typical of those to whom all things come easily, he treated the women in his life with a relational indifference, focusing only sexual conquests. Jack gives the expression, ‘love ‘em and leave ‘em’ new meaning. His exploits, especially cheating on Brody, led him on a slow spiral downwards, until, when his life was severely endangered, he repented to the winds of his wicked ways; all the while promising to make good to ‘someone up there.’

Myra is a typical besotted mother, having favored Jack, over Michael, her younger son. Yet she is a strong determined woman who never stops believing her son is still alive.

Kai, the young security boss, is a simple, dedicated, loving husband and Father, caring for his Father, over and above the costly support of his own family. He is dedicated to his job and a man of integrity, who is also compassionate toward Myra and the loss of her son. Considering the inclusion of the shipwrecked Islanders, there is a fair list of characters, but the reader is never confused as to who is who in the milieu.

General

Monika is a master of the English language and pays attention to detail, sometimes lingering a little too long in this area. Her ability to make her description so effective is such, that it forms a canvas in one’s mind; this is a delightful experience, as it makes the tale live. Her technical knowledge of ‘adrift in the ocean’ with its see-saw of terrors and gentle calms; the fish and the ability to secure them in the scene of desperation left me feeling as if she was writing her autobiography. Jack’s shifting mind games, as he fights for survival, caused me to mouth alternately, “Your Karma has come to visit Jack,” to “Hang in there man, you gonna make it!”

Read it or skip it?

I read the e-book version but would have loved to read the book instead. Read it? Yes, yes, yes! My prayer is for it to hit the Best-Seller lists, not just for Monika’s sake, but for the many that would be gifted by its read.

As a writer, I not only loved the read, but learned much from Monika’s inimitable style.

Well done, go ahead now and reap your pot-o-gold Monika!

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