Title:  Stranded

Author:  Don & Stephanie Prichard

Pages:  401

Year:  2014

Publisher:  Self-Published

My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.

Jake Chalmers and his wife, Ginny, have boarded a cruise ship on their second honeymoon.  The year is 1981 and they are sailing for the Philippines.  It is a very small ship with only a skeleton crew, which strikes one passenger as odd.  Jake’s wife has recently been diagnosed with cancer and has only six months to live, so he has planned out many of her favorite things to do to show his love to her.  Ginny is a people person and soon has taken a great-aunt, Betty, traveling with her 11-year-old niece, Crystal, under her wing.

Eve Eriksson is a federal prosecutor with a big case coming up against Danny Romero, a criminal who deals in the sex trade among other things.  Eve needs proof to use against Danny and she thinks she will find it on this ship that she believes has been used to transfer women illegally to be sold into sexual slavery.  She believes the captain to be involved as he is the half-brother of Danny Romero, but she must get proof.  This is a big case for her with a lot riding on it.  She is on the ship undercover as Eva Gray.  She gets the proof she needs, but before the ship lands in Manila the order to abandon ship is given.  What happens next is a gritty and harrowing tale of survival.

With such vivid descriptions, I feel like I need a drink of water in the shade!  I was on the deserted island with our four main characters, trying to avoid insects, snakes, crocodiles and tarantulas.  I could feel the heat, smell the sweat and hear the waves of the ocean against the shore.  What one saw as God’s provision another saw as a negative and held it against God.  The growth in the characters as they are away from civilization was such a delight to read.  What they discovered about themselves as it came to light was a revelation to them as well as to readers and created tension, drama and love.  This is a story that will keep you on the edge of your seat, flipping pages rapidly to find out what happens next in this thrilling tale!  I look forward to reading Forgotten, a sequel to this story.  I can’t wait to see what happens next!  Great job to this pair of authors on an outstanding story!