Title: The Wild Road to Key West-The Cave of the Stars by Michael Reisig
Genre: (Historically listed as Literature & Fiction, Historical Fiction, Men’s Adventures, Travel, and Sea Adventures)
Publisher: Clear Creek Press
Publication Date: December 15, 2017
Source: ARC from Author
Title and Cover: The Wild Road to Key West – Cover continues the series brand
You know you can’t go wrong with a new offering from Michael Reisig in his Key West series and I’m excited to present: The Wild Road to Key West, The Cave of the Stars. This is the eighth of the series and finds the Hole in the Coral Wall Gang scrambling once again to duck in and out of the richly descriptive jungles of South America in one piece.
Reisig always sets a frantic pace in chapter one that will continue through his latest adventure. This one begins with the rescue an old friend, Captain O’Neal now of the South Florida DEA. He has tangled in the Venezuelan jungles with a powerful gem-mining warlord, Santiago Talla. They discover Arturio, who is given to unhealthy games of Russian Roulette in the local bar. He knows the area and becomes their guide.
In the process of the rescue, they discover a cave with creative pictographs of the stars, earth, and inhabitants. But how could an ancient culture in that area of Venezuela have possibly been able to plot the celestial heavens? Could it really have been inherited from the tribe that now inhabits the area? The indigenous tribe still lives rather quietly and rustically, shying from persons trespassing their area.
Once Kansas Stamps and Will Bell extricate their friend, however, they realize they’ve created a very dangerous enemy in the gem king, Talla, and must go back. As always, the best defense is a vigorous offense and having gotten their friend back to South Florida safely, determine they must act quickly.
The boys are introduced to the “lady witch,” Passi, who seems to have the scoop on lost and hidden cities full of treasures, and the mysterious cave said to possess gold, diamonds, and emeralds rich beyond imagination. Passi is not a good lady witch, however, and creates another set of dangerous problems for the boys, which only serves to further infuriate the gem king.
The jungle holds many secrets though, not just those grown over with time and vegetation. This one walks on two legs and understands exactly what he has witnessed. It is the introduction of Slinkan that adds yet another and deeper dimension to this tale. Slinkan knows something about those artifacts–but he’s not telling.
As always, Reisig weaves more than a little historical or scientific detail to lend credibility to the tale. It is the fascinating history involving the Spanish conquests that sets the stage for the 80s tale involving the gem-mining operations and the hapless rancheros involved. From Passi, to Arturio, to Santiago Talla, these new characters are fleshed so fully you feel the disgust or fear each generates. These are powerful forces that strain the favorite characters of the Hole in the Coral Wall Gang from Will and Kansas, Crazy Eddie, and Bill Cody, to Bobby Branch and Travis Christian to the max. Woven into the tale is a homeless dog that Kansas has befriended that they finally name Shadow. Shadow emotes a sympathetic yet powerful character of his own, and one that has you rooting for the dog as well as the successful survival of the men.
These are combat experienced men and they don’t give in easily, nor leave a man behind. It’s the American Western code of heroism, celebrating the triumphant battle.
Reisig’s tales never drag or slow. The stories are full of heart-stopping action and audible gasps with immensely sympathetic favorite characters or antagonists so rabidly bad you’re relieved when they are neutralized. This may be Reisig’s best yet, though I’ve loved each and every one.
I was given an ARC download by the author for an honest review, was delighted to read, and do not receive compensation. See if you don’t agree! Heartily recommended to all those who love non-stop action, men’s adventure, thrillers, hinted sci-fi, and triumph against all odds. You don’t want to miss this one!
Rosepoint Publishing: Five of Five Stars
The Author: (From Amazon Author page) Michael Reisig has been writing professionally for 20 years. He is a former Caribbean adventurer turned newspaper editor, award-winning columnist, and best-selling novelist. After high school and college in Florida, he relocated to the Florida Keys. He established a commercial diving business, got his pilot’s license, and traveled extensively throughout the southern hemisphere, diving, treasure hunting, and adventuring.
Reisig claims he has been thrown out of more countries in the Caribbean Basin that most people ever visit, and he admits that a great many of the situations and the characters in his novels are authentic – but nothing makes a great read like experience…
He now lives in the mountains of Arkansas, where he hunts and fishes, and writes, but he still escapes to the Caribbean for an occasional adventure. ©2017 Virginia Williams