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Submarine Warfare - 4.5 stars....

Polaris: A Novel - Todd Tucker

"One day in the not-too-distant future, Pete Hamlin regains consciousness deep inside the nuclear submarine Polaris. He's got a gun in his hand, a fire raging outside his door, and a dead man at his feet. Soon Pete discovers that the ship is in the middle of a mutiny - and he has no idea what side he's on."

"He finds the ship is now commanded by the beautiful but volatile Hana Moody. She's locked the former captain, Finn McCallister, inside a steel trunk, accusing him of treason. Frank Holmes is Moody's loyalist, an imposing physical presence who shares Moody's unquestioning devotion to the cause of the Alliance. The ship's feckless doctor hovers in the background, unable to help Pete find out the truth about the Polaris. And outside the ship's steel hull lurks another submarine, yet another presence that might be either friend or deadly foe."

"To save himself and discover the truth, Pete must journey with Polaris back to a forlorn piece of rock in the middle of a dangerous ocean: Eris Island. To get there he must fight murderous shipmates, a swarm of bomb-dropping drones, and a plague that is attacking everyone on both sides of a battle that Pete barely understands. Only on Eris Island does Hamlin finally learn the truth."


I love reading stories that are set on ships or in the ocean so when I saw this book was labeled "submarine warfare" I was instantly intrigued. The setting didn't disappoint  either. A majority of the story is set on the submarine, Polaris, so I got a very intimate portrait of the sub and all of its unique features and dangers and how life on board is for its occupants.  There's also non-stop action, drama and close quarter encounters with an enemy sub which all combined, made a very fun and suspenseful story. 


Another added bonus is that unmanned drones, which have been very popular lately, play a very large part in the story so there is a ton of very cool information about them, their history and how they work. If you've ever been curious about drones, you should definitely check this one out. I did not realize the full extent of their reach and capability until reading this book.


The only minor drawback to the story was that there weren't any clear separations or time stamps between plot changes and flashbacks so I found myself somewhat confused and had to back track to figure out if we were still in the past or had moved to the present. This was an ARC though so this should hopefully be fixed before final publication.


All-in all though this was a very well-written story. I was enthralled from the moment I picked it up. The underwater submarine setting, the fast pacing and the unique plot inclusion of the drones are all excellent reasons to give this book a try. It's the perfect beach or pool read! 


*I received this ARC from NetGalley & St. Martin's Press in exchange for an honest review.



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