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Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Buccaneer - A Swashbuckling Adventure - and that's no cliché

Last Christmas, Dane Maddock was frolicking in the snow with his girlfriend Jade Ihara - Bones and his sister Angel in tow - when the twisted, Euro-branch of the Dominion decided to ruin his holiday. This year, Dane, Bones, and crew are up in Nova Scotia where Bones' crazy Uncle Charlie is ramrodding a team looking for Captain Kidd's fabled treasure in and around the so-called Money Pit.

I am fresh off reading Buccaneer, an excellent addition to the Dane Maddock adventure series and every time I start to type a highlight, I end up tapping the backspace key because I don't want to spoil any of the numerous surprises that Mr. Wood has in store for his readers. All the things that we've come to expect are here in spades: Action, mystery, adventure, legend, history, babes (as Bones might crack) - and of course - the bad guys.

David Wood continues to mature as a novelist and Buccaneer is his best work in this series yet. It is beefier, cleaner, deeper and more sinuous than its predecessors. I've read all the Maddock adventures and, acknowledging what several other reviewers have noted, there have been a fair number of grammatical faux-pas in previous episodes. And while there are a few still lurking in Buccaneer, the number is down significantly from past books and that improves the overall reading experience tremendously. And to be honest, if I wasn't a writer myself - one who has a hard time turning off his inner editor - I'd likely have missed most of them.

It's been a long time since I've read a book that I didn't want to put down but Buccaneer is one of those books. My wife can attest that several chores did not get accomplished over the New Year's holiday because I had my nose in my HP Touchpad or laptop Kindle app. I can't say much more without getting into details best left undiscovered in a measly review. Mr. Wood's plot is excellent; Buccaneer is rife with well-developed characters and the story's pacing is perfect.

If you want a thrilling read that will hold your interest long after the last page is turned, Buccaneer is the next book you should read. I posted a near carbon-copy of this review on Amazon's website; and for those who might wonder why I graded Buccaneer out at 4 stars instead of 5? Mr. Wood has shown me what he is capable of, improving exponentially with each Dane Maddock adventure. David, I'm sorry, but you're a victim of your own success, and I know you can raise the bar even higher for the next installment!

My Kindle Apps, and that fifth star, are waiting...


Boring notes and disclaimers:

1. I purchased and read Buccaneer because I like the series. David Wood did not provide me a review copy in return for this review (not that it would have made any difference).

2. I am not a shill for But...dang! I purchased and downloaded Buccaneer for Kindle after downloading Amazon's sweet (FREE!) Kindle App for my Windows laptop. And there is this totally cool synchronization thing that takes place: If I read up to a certain point on my laptop's Kindle App, and then later decided to use my TouchPad Kindle App to read some more, it would ask me if I wanted to sync to the latest page read. In other words, I could switch back and forth between laptop and tablet and never lose my place. Kindle rocks!

3. It's not mandatory to read David Wood's previous books in the Dane Maddock series to enjoy Buccaneer, but if you've got time, I highly recommend all of them!

- Dourado
- Cibola
- Quest
- Icefall (a novella)
- Buccaneer

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