Dead on the Delta
Adult; Mystery/Thriller; (Market)
When Alexa Williams agrees to spend four months doing lion research with boyfriend Reese, she looks forward to witnessing the elemental life and death struggle of the African wild. But she never imagines she’ll become one of the hunted on the remote Okavango Delta.
Botswana protects its wildlife with one of the strictest policies on the African continent and an entire army deployed to combat poachers. So, Alexa and Reese are shocked when poachers wipe out an entire herd of elephants. At the site of the mass slaughter near their lion project, they promise authorities that they’ll watch for poaching activity as they travel the Delta doing research.
In the capital, Alexa is part of a committee updating conservation legislation. When the strict anti-poaching policies come under debate, tensions flare and Alexa begins to suspect the ongoing poaching incidents may be about even more than the illicit ivory trade. The elephant poaching continues unchecked, and a close friend dies when caught in the crossfire. After an alarming series of near escapes, Alexa knows she’s getting closer to the truth.
When gunmen attack the safari camp where she and Reese are staying, Alexa must brave wild animals and the dangerous labyrinth of Delta channels in a desperate attempt to save the hostages, including the man she loves.
Plot/Idea: 8 out of 10
Originality: 8 out of 10
Prose: 8 out of 10
Character/Execution: 9 out of 10
Overall: 8.25 out of 10
Plot: The locale is vivid and the main characters are empathetic; the overall theme of protecting rare and endangered wildlife, while not romanticizing or stereotyping Botswana, makes for a worthwhile read.
Prose/Style: The prose here is above average. The many details of landscape and indigenous species are especially vivid.
Originality: Many books are written about going on safari in parts of Africa, but this one also encompasses the theme of illegal poaching.
Character Development/Execution: The characters are, for the most part, multi-dimensional. The romance thread is not overplayed nor at the core of the mystery. This reader can clearly envision the majority of the characters portrayed here.
Date Submitted: August 20, 2021