“ Interesting character development and crisp dialogue. ”
In the near future in Flagstaff, Arizona, a peaceful Sunday afternoon for the Franklins is interrupted by a phone call. Jerry has to go to work to fix a problem with a cargo rocket, scheduled for launch that evening. Jerry’s wife Sheryl complains to no avail, while his son Dustin is disappointed to lose dad for the day.
At a rundown diner on the Arizona highway, a lonely waitress entices a handsome stranger, Michael Potter, to a nearby spot in the desert: a rarely used missile launch area. She doesn’t suspect that Potter is a dangerous sociopath.
At the launch site, Jerry solves the technical problem affecting the countdown. In the dark, he doesn’t see the stranger sneaking up behind him. Potter attacks, they fight and the unconscious Jerry is locked in the cargo rocket as it is launched into space.
Potter steals Jerry’s jeep and finds a picture of Sheryl in the glove box. She reminds him of his first love, and Potter decides he must find and possess Sheryl at any cost.
Jerry, assumed dead by his family and coworkers, wakes up in the cargo rocket and wonders if he can survive. Meanwhile, Sheryl must help her son Dustin accept the death of his father. Battling her own fears and doubts, she needs to fill both a mother and father role for him.
Potter moves nearer to Sheryl, who he now refers to as his “Angel.” Taking a job at a gas station, through a combination of earnings and stealing, he saves up the money he will need for his twisted plan to court her. It’s not long until Sheryl is at the supermarket where she meets Michael Potter. He has been planning this encounter a long time as part of an elaborate plot to possess her.
After weeks of stalking Sheryl, Potter realizes that her son is going to interfere with his attempts to possess her, and decides he must kill the boy. Examining the contents of the latest trash bag taken from Sheryl’s yard, Potter finds a hand written message: “Vacation, Grand Canyon Nov 1 – Nov 9.”
Potter imagines the possibilities. A little kid, if he wasn’t careful, could fall off a cliff. If that happened, he, Potter, would be there to provide loving support and physical relief to the grieving mother.
CHASM is a psychological thriller that would appeal to fans of Michael Crichton or Arthur C. Clarke. A little sci-fi, a lot of character and story, wrapped up in a fast-moving narrative that draws you in.
This reader gave it 5 stars!
I really enjoyed this book. Reading about living in space for months under the circumstances written was fascinating. One would wonder whether this could really be acomplished by a human being. The subplot regarding the main character’s family was exciting and kept me reading. I found the thoughts of the author on the subject of life and death interesting as well. I would recommend this book. – Sandy