REVIEW: Alone on the Shield by Kirk Landers
ALONE ON THE SHIELD by Kirk Landers is a high-tension, Canadian wilderness adventure novel with the added bonus of some romance.
I love living vicariously through others as they take risks in their travel ventures. The main character is off the hinge and ready to do something he may regret, which gave the novel an unexpected edginess.
Award winning magazine editor Gabe Pender gets divorced and loses his job at sixty. He can’t resist punching his irritating boss on his way out the door, which lands Gabe in therapy for PTSD. His aggressive behavior is linked to contained anger as a Vietnam veteran.
Pender decides to travel to his favorite place, Quetico in Canada. He locates a former girlfriend and they plan to meet. Both have been solo canoeists for years, so it seems logical to meet at Annette’s favorite secret island in Quetico.
As a wilderness guide, Annette DuBose is more than capable of taking care of herself. But her daughter is worried because this old friend seems to be a powder keg about to blow. Her daughter’s instincts are good, but Annette ignores them and does what she always does, braves the elements.
We follow Pender and Annette separately as they canoe through the waterways to their meet. Neither expect the obstacles they’ll face alone or together. Will re-uniting after all these years be a once in a lifetime collision, or will they take on forever?
Some repetitive thoughts bugged me in this novel. I would have preferred less internal dialogue rehashing their feelings. The adventure was exceptional, and the personalities were hilarious at times, so I easily ignored my minor quibbles.
Author Kirk Landers knows how to write an adventure that’s gripping, propelling the reader forward with curiosity. I didn’t expect the romance, so it was a pleasant surprise. I love well-seasoned characters who celebrate life, and these two impressed me with their vitality. Their accomplishments and perseverance influence a life lived to the fullest expectations. I envied their abilities, so it was especially fun to arm-chair-travel with them.
I’d love more books set in the Canadian wilderness like this one. It’s exactly what I love to read. ALONE ON THE SHIELD by Kirk Landers is the perfect way to experience an imaginative travel adventure with some exciting anticipation to rile things up a bit. I’m anxious for the author’s next novel.
Review by Dorine, courtesy of The Zest Quest. Digital copy provided by the publisher through NetGalley for an honest review.
Alone on the Shield by Kirk Landers
Category: Contemporary Fiction with Romance elements
Publisher: Chicago Review Press (November 1, 2017)
Rated 4 out of 5