Damaged (Maggie O'Dell)
by Alex Kava
Review by Verna Suit
Anchor Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780307474599
Date: 24 May 2011 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
When a cooler full of human body parts is found floating in the ocean off Pensacola, Florida, FBI Special Agent Maggie O'Dell is sent there to check it out. Unknown to her, her close friend Col. Benjamin Platt, director of infectious diseases at Ft. Detrick, MD, has also been sent to Pensacola to check out a mysterious virus that attacks sites of amputations. Maggie and Ben pursue their cases independently until they happen to run into each other and start to consider a possible connection. Together with Coast Guard rescue swimmer Liz Bailey, who originally found the floating cooler, they discover the key to an insidious crime in which GIs injured in Afghanistan and sent to Pensacola to recover, instead become collateral damage.
Complicating the investigation is Hurricane Isaac, a Category 5 storm that is barreling down directly on Pensacola. The three heroes battle both the elements and time as everyone is urged to evacuate. But Maggie, Ben and Liz persevere. They are all brave and likeable heroes. Maggie and Liz, especially, are two strong women up against resentful bosses. The book has plenty of cliff hangers as the narration jumps from one story thread to another. And the excitement level rises as the rotating winds get nearer.
Damaged is the perfect book to read in hurricane season. It provides all the excitement and anticipation of a potentially destructive storm without the actual risk. This 7th Maggie O'Dell novel is a thriller that will keep you turning pages until the skies clear.