The Moonlit Earth by Christopher Rice
Synopsis from publisher:
When Megan and Cameron Reynolds' father walked out on their mother, they forged an unbreakable bond. If their father could not be there to take care of them, they would always be there to take care of each other. But life intervenes, and siblings go separate ways . . . until something happens to reforge that bond.
At thirty, faced with disappointments in career and romance, Megan Reynolds returns to the safety of Cathedral Beach, the home of her mother, who lives among the wealthy with no money of her own. Cameron worries that his sister will lose herself around their mothers frivolous life, but Megan worries more about her brother. She worries that Cameron's care- free charm, which makes him popular in both his work as a flight attendant on a luxury airline and the West Hollywood party scene he enjoys, could lead him into danger.
When a bomb goes off in a high-end hotel in Hong Kong, security-camera footage appears on television showing two men escaping: one Middle Eastern and one American. Megan and her mother recognize the young American as Cameron and find that he has become enmeshed with a mysterious family of wealthy Saudis.
In her desperate journey to save her brothers life, Megan uncovers a trail of secrets and intrigue that snakes from the decadent beaches of southern Thailand to the glass skyscrapers of Hong Kong and finds herself part of a dark global conspiracy that involves a member of her own family.
Did you catch all that? We have family trauma, potential terrorism, global conspiracy, thwarted romance....this was not my favorite Christopher Rice novel, mostly because I think he added one too many plot points and just couldn't quite pull it all together.
Had he wanted to, Rice could have given us a perfectly satisfying novel about the family secrets and tragedies of the Reynolds clan. Or, he could have told Cameron's story, about his whirlwind involvement with the royal Saudi family. Or, he could have given us a thriller about mistaken identity and global secrecy. Unfortunately, in trying to give us all three, he ultimately leaves the reader feeling just a bit unsatisfied. I just didn't feel like any of the three story lines were given enough time to fully develop, and I wasn't ever able to delve deeply enough into the thoughts and motivations of his characters.
Unfortunately, while much of the novel was entertaining, I felt it ultimately didn't live up to it's promise. I'm sure I will read the next Christopher Rice novel, but I don't know that he will be on my "must-read" list after this.
Source: South Side library
MPAA rating: R for violence and sexuality
My rating: 6/10