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Publisher: St. Martin's (Dec. 8th, 2015)
Price (Hardcover): $26.99. (e-book): $12.99
ISBN (Hardcover): 978-1-250-05443-2
ISBN (e-book): 978-1-466-85742-1
St. Martin Press (Nov 9, 2010)
St. Martin's Press (2014)
hardcover ISBN: 978-1250020581
ebook ISBN: 978-1250020598
With an obvious nod to Herman Melville and Moby Dick, Poyer, whose many previous nautically themed novels include The Weapon, tells a riveting modern-day tale of high-seas Antarctic adventure. Fleeing professional disgrace, Dr. Sara Pollard joins the antiwhaling activists aboard the Black Anemone, a high-tech yacht owned by rich philanthropist Jules-Louis Vergeigne and sponsored by the Greenpeace-like Cetacean Protection League. The members of the crew, which includes hard-bitten Captain Dru Perrault and movie star Tehiyah Doree, come from different backgrounds and have varied motives, while Sara feels uncomfortable with their mission of harassing a Japanese whaling fleet in the vast Southern Ocean. The crew battles snow, ice, frigid temperatures, storms, and each other before encountering the whalers in the midst of slaughtering hundreds of whales. The appearance of a mysterious rogue whale, however, introduces an even more deadly hazard than the crew’s human enemies. Poyer’s intense, fast-paced prose creates palpable suspense as he vividly describes the miserable close quarters, the terrifying sea and weather conditions, and the gruesome, wasteful destruction of the sea’s largest mammals.
Poyer takes fans on a frightening ride that will have them reaching for their Dramamine.
Primate behaviorist Dr. Sara Pollard joins a small crew on the sailboat Black Anemone that plans to disrupt Japanese whaling in the Antarctic seas. Vessels called kill ships fire harpoons with exploding heads that leave their targets little chance of escape or survival. The hunters will not stop until there are no more whales to hunt, so Black Anemone sails from the tip of Argentina to points south with the promise: “We’re gonna do some good out there.” As they search for whales, they encounter turbulent waves, wind and icebergs—along with seemingly infinite solitude and unending sunlight. The stage is meticulously set before the first encounter with their adversary. Poyer describes sea and ice in gorgeous detail. Everything seems hostile and deadly, with one exciting scene after another, as when a Japanese crewman jumps (falls? is thrown?) overboard into the frigid water and will die without immediate help, or when a woman tries to help a harpooned sperm whale. That whale keeps trailing them, apparently bent on vengeance against humans. Through every threat, Pollard and crew must worry about their fuel supply and their ability to stay afloat. Can Black Anemone make landfall in Australia, 4,000 miles away?
Poyer spent a great deal of his life on the ocean, and it shows. This is a fine thriller.
In Poyer’s latest ocean-going adventure, a handful of activists intends to follow a Japanese whaling fleet into Antarctic waters to expose the whalers’ illegal activities. But as they pursue their prey, the activists aboard the Black Anemone face their own life-and-death challenges, including, as hinted by the title, a sperm whale that seems fixated on the Black Anemone. Poyer has created half-a-dozen unique and memorable characters, including a disgraced primate researcher; a self-important Hollywood star, who imagines herself an antiwhaling activist; a woman who was nearly killed by an orca; and a double-amputee Afghanistan War veteran. It’s the crew members who propel the story, the author exploring their hidden pasts, their personal agendas, and the relationships that spring up among them. Some readers might feel Poyer goes a bit far—the book takes a very dark turn about two-thirds of the way through that might stretch credibility a little—but the story is undeniably powerful.— David Pitt
Publisher: St. Martin's (2013)
After a tragic accident maims her laboratory assistant, Dr. Sara Pollard’s career as a primate behaviorist lies in ruins. With nothing left to lose, Pollard – descendant of a Nantucket captain whose ship was sunk by a rogue whale – accepts an offer to join anti-whaling activists on a round-the-world racing yacht as the resident scientist. The plan is to sail from Argentina to the stormy Antarctic Sea. There they'll shadow, harass, and expose the Japanese fleet, which continues to kill and process endangered whales in internationally-declared sanctuaries.
But everyone aboard Black Anemone has a secret, or something to live down. Her crew—including a beautiful but narcissistic film celebrity, an Afghan War veteran in search of the buzz of combat, and an enigmatic, obsessive captain—will confront hostile whalers, brutal weather, dangerous ice, near-mutiny, and romantic conflict. But no one aboard is prepared for being targeted by a massive creature with a murderous agenda of its own....