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Book Review: ‘Cascade’ by Peter Harper

Title: Cascade

Published: 28th November 2016

Author: Peter Harper

 

Synopsis:

On hearing the news her adopted father has suffered a second heart attack, Shani Balcescu dashes from St Aquinas College in Oxford to be at his bedside in Prague. Her father asks her forgiveness, but Shani takes his words to be little more than the ramblings of a dying man. Until the following day, when she discovers the name Tuma Dangbo, a former Séroulése president gunned down in a devastating coup in the West African state thirty-six years ago. French journalist, Nicolas Dubois, helps Shani make sense of her ancestry, before introducing her to the leader of the rebels at a safe house in London. Just as Shani starts to trust and have feelings for the journalist, he sends her a bizarre text and breaks contact. Nicolas’s disappearance threatens to derail her already fragile state of mind, and with an attempted coup in Séroulé virtually underway, ‘friend or foe’ takes on a new meaning for Shani as she questions whether she is being manipulated by the rebels, and that the present despotic regime is about to be replaced by another, only with much greater and far-reaching repercussions. 

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2017 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book by a male author. Action, suspense and political drama all rolled into one well written riveting read.Séroulé, West Africa is where we start our journey to the past to help figure out the present and the family Shani never knew she belonged to. It seems that thirty-six years ago a military/political coup occurred to get rid of Tuma Dangbo, the President of Séroulé, and his family. Against all odds his youngest daughter Zinsa managed to evade capture and escape. Something that Kuetey, the man who orchestrated the coup so he could take over as the new President, can’t seem to let go.

This is where we come to present day to Shani Balcescu. She has just started a fellowship at St Thomas Aquinas and even though is scared knows she needs to move on to grow. She has suffered from insecurities and anxiety for a while now and after her current break up ended badly, when you find out you may want to punch him, is starting to panic a bit by being alone in a new place. After only being there for a day or so though she gets a call that changes everything. Her adopted father/grandfather Andrei has suffered from another heart attack and she is needed at his side back in Prague ASAP. Dusasna, a close family friend, keeps saying that he was asking for forgiveness from her and mentioning the name Zinsa. This means nothing to Shani and even after she gets there he keeps mentioning it. Something about a small girl and the name Zinsa. She doesn’t know at the time what it means or why he would be asking for forgiveness. It’s not until later while taking a look at his safe after a vivid dream that things start to come to the surface. It brings more questions than answers though about who her family really was, how she’s related to Zinsa and what happened to her to loose her foot. What she finds first leads her to Romania and then Paris. A reporter in Paris, Nicolas Dubois, has some information for her she might find useful. She found an article written by him about her grandfather dismissing the corruption claims. He has insight on what happened with the coup and how Zinsa got away. He also knows of a freedom fighter movement where plans are in place for another coup to get rid of Kuetey and his evil corruption. Khamadi Soglo is the man in charge and Nicolas knows how much he would want Shani to be apart of their movement. Cloak and dagger meetings are one thing but they tend to lead to danger the more you get involved.

President Kuetey is very much a twisted man with far to much power. You are longing for his downfall and just trying to figure out how and when it might happen. He’s obsessed with the blood of Tuma still being out there so as long as he’s around Shani will always be in danger. Well her and anyone she is close to, Nicolas soon gets put in the thick of it. From the moment Shani started on this mission to figure out the past, it’s the same past that’s been on its way to get her. Its lucky when Osakwe comes along in a time of need, he certainly appears good at getting you out of tricky situations – though Shani has her moments too. The wheels are turning and there’s no turning back.

Gripping story that will have you second-guessing yourself about what people’s real motives are. Secrets throughout to keep the reader hooked trying to figure them out. Shani and Nicolas have chemistry and intrigue right from the start and are clearly like-minded people to blend together so quickly. Hold on to your hats people this is going to be a wild ride exploring the greed of powerful men.

4 out of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.

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