Book title: Beyond the Surf
A young woman’s dream. A mercenary tycoon seizing the opportunity. Islands ripe with potential. …. All in the throes of coming of age through political unrest ……. Kayte King lives to kite surf. Financially broke in her windless hometown, Kayte’s spirits sink to all new levels. When an all-expenses paid invite to The Martinez Islands presents itself, to promote tourism with the potential to break her current world record — a once in lifetime opportunity — Kayte grabs it. Accompanied by her boyfriend, Steve, she travels to the islands with high hopes and expectations. They link up with their American counterparts and form the kite surfing group that will attract tourism the islands desperately need. Mercenary leader, Roger MacGill, brought in to eliminate anarchy, is tasked with the formation and training of a local police force. Stability temporarily subdued, MacGill has capitalized on the island’s beauty and invests in its modernization. But, MacGill is now dangerously low on funds and desperate to see returns on his investment. The kite surfing contingency’s arrival rocks local interest. Fascinated by the kites, yet wary of foreigners, their apprehension bubbles to the surface. Storm clouds gather. The political unrest that follows, threatens to shatter all their dreams.
This book was a lovely Sunday read, though I did not enjoy it as much as I expected. I will though give it 3.5 stars, since the writing was not at all bad and all in all, the action is quite complex.
I can say that this is more like an average between a subjective and objective point of view. Personally, I lost track of the main idea of the story. I believe somewhere around the road the book lost its focus. The author tried to expand the action to more than Katye’s record breaking at kite surfing. There are numerous plots, if I can say it like that. The reader has to follow her efforts to become better and her struggles with her boyfriend, the political issues of a beautiful island once strangers arrive and the financial interests of an English mercenary who’s invested a large amount of money in the island’s development, without having a return of his money. I believe there is too much to follow and in my opinion not too much happens to “wow” the reader on any of the plots.
Now being objective, this is quite a nice book. The remarkable skills of HW Neild cannot go unnoticed. I loved the way he described The Martinez Islands and as well Katye’s passion for surfing and her ambition to achieve better results. The characters are very well built and each may represent a human typology. We have the journalist with a hidden agenda, the investor who still awaits his profit (lucky him that he’s also a mercenary J ), the self-destructive guy who, having lost his ability to surf, is drowning his sorrow in alcohol.
All in all, I stick to my initial point that maybe focusing on less aspects would have made this book much to my taste, but except that… The book was very lovely and interesting, with an exceptional writing. This was my first book by HW Neild and I’m happy to have tried it!