Friday, April 25, 2008

Golden Goose: A Book Review

The book Golden Goose by Edmond Humm is a classic action-adventure novel in the style of Jack Higgins and his famous Sean Dillon Series. This novel, a fictional work about actual historical occurrences clutches the reader's attention in a hard and unyielding grip, refusing to let go, from start to finish.

During World War 2 an agreement was made for the United States to hold Great Britain's gold reserves in trust should Axis powers succeed in taking England. Many gold shipments were sent across the North Atlantic, only a portion arrived safely. German U-boats laid claim to the rest, pillaging the gold or sending them to the murky depths.

This novel follows the story of the Western Star, a ship whose Commanding Officer chose to send to the bottom of the sea -along with himself- rather than let fall into Nazi hands. Many years later, his only remaining descendant learns of his valiant decision and the gold he consigned to the deep.

Jean Harris, a strong British woman, goes about trying to reclaim the gold in order to pay the back taxes on her family's ancestral home. Along the way she encounters many characters, some sincere, others with ulterior motives. It isn't long before she finds herself in a struggle with less than ethical businessmen for more than the gold.

The story moves quickly, hammering out one twist after another, not giving the reader time to catch their breath as it plunges deeper into a rich world of vivid, yet concise backgrounds and quirky characters that are the real beauty of this work. They are interesting, yet realistic. The author never forgets to show their humanity above all else. I believe that Mr. Humm's depiction of the story's Dramatis Personae is what makes this a truly exceptional book.

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