October 18, 2011

A Critical Loss of Balance by Mark Shaver

A Critical Loss of Balance by Mark E. Shaver tells the story of a father's need to restore the balance in his life after the kidnapping of his daughter.

Cliff Elliott is a kind man.  A gentle man.  A hard working man.  He's a good and responsible husband and father.  He works as a construction site manager and does not have much money.  That's why he's shocked when his daughter is targeted in a kidnapping.  He knew there had been a string of kidnappings occurring around town but he never thought his family would be involved because they did not have the means to deliver a healthy ransom.

Despite their financial situation, Cliff's daughter was returned safely.  But the circumstances caused a change in Cliff... a loss of balance.  He was no longer the kind and gentle man that everyone knew and loved.  He was fueled with rage and thought only of having his revenge.  It wasn't enough to let the police do their job... he had to become involved and see to it that these kidnappers got what they deserved.  That was the only way Cliff could restore his balance and become himself again.

For me, this book had it's goods and bads.  The book was great in the beginning, the middle dragged, then the last 100 pages were great again.  I enjoyed the emotional roller coaster.  I could feel Cliff's anger, sadness and desperation.  The other characters were also well developed.  You loved the right people, and you loved to hate the others.

The flaws... all the typos.  There were many missing end quotes.  There were several spelling errors.  There were times when the author wanted to say something and then must have backtracked to word it differently, and so it read wrong... like: "leaning against the front of Arthur's car with Max was standing next to him." (taken from page 460).  With Max was standing?  Should be "with Max standing" or "Max was standing"... but not both.  There are a few of those mistakes throughout.  I'm no editor, but I found plenty of mistakes.

Overall, a satisfying amount of nail biting suspense.  A good read.
3 stars.
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