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Over the Edge    by Suzanne Brockmann order for
Over the Edge
by Suzanne Brockmann
Order:  USA  Can
Ballantine, 2001

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* * *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Reserve chopper pilot, Teri Howe, and US Navy SEAL, Senior Chief Stan Wolchonok's first few encounters are during routine training missions at the US Navel base in San Diego. Stan is duly impressed with Teri's expert piloting skills and Teri soon understands why the Senior Chief has gained a steller reputation as Mr. Fix-It - he seems able to mend any problem thrown his way, large or small. When Stan witnesses Teri being sexually harassed by an officer and finds out it's not the first time, it's natural for him to step in. Teri on the other hand, would much rather avoid personal confrontations - she's done so for most of her life. But Stan's gentle, yet unwavering persuasion helps convince her otherwise. Theirs quickly becomes much more than just a working relationship despite Stan's best efforts to keep things between them on only a friendly basis.

The action escalates when a routine training mission to the Azores is scrubbed and SEAL Team Sixteen is re-routed to Kazbeskistan. A group of extremists has hijacked a 747 and taken over one hundred people hostage. Now it's up to Stan, his elite SEAL team, and a group of specially trained FBI negotiators to convince the terrorists to stand down and release their hostages unharmed. Over the next few days tensions, danger and emotions escalate to a near boiling point.

Over the Edge is Suzanne Brockmann's 3rd installment in her increasingly popular Troubleshooter series. She skillfully choreographs her usual large cast of characters through a realistic and adventure-packed story and juggles no less than three sub-plots, each as riveting as the next. Brockmann's true talents are exhibited in her larger-than-life characters. Yet skilful writer that she is, none of the secondaries ever detract from Teri and Stan's story. The author also does not shy away from showing the grittier side of military life, nor the brutality of the extremists. In Over the Edge, Brockmann balances another exciting roller coaster ride with a truly satisfying romance. And of course she's left enough plot threads dangling to keep readers guessing and eagerly anticipating the next mission awaiting SEAL Team Sixteen. Book four of the series, Out of Control, is scheduled to hit book stands in the spring of 2002.

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