North of Boston: A Novel. Elisabeth Elo. Pamela Dormer Books. January 2014. 400 pp. pbk and e-book. ISBN #: 9780670015658.
A terrible boating accident leaves one dead man and one woman who barely survived beyond human comprehension! Working in a lobster boat with a friend, Ned Rizzo, Pirio Kasparov spends four hours in frigid waters, a feat that not even the renowned Navy Seals can accomplish without special equipment. At first Pirio and Ned’s friends show the expected comfort; but when Pirio realizes she’s not getting any answers about how a very, large ship came careening out of the dark and fog to totally wipe out Ned’s lobster boat. So she decides she will investigate what is clearly emerging as more of a possibility toward murder rather than just an unfortunate accident!
At first she is distrustful of everyone until she realizes that journalist Russell Parnell is onto something important and they begin to work together to solve this complex mystery! Plenty of risk, violence and literal death threats fill these pages and keep the reader riveted to the story.
There’s another story within the story that’s just as fascinating, a mysterious world where Pirio’s mother once lived in the Canadian village of Baffin Bay. Pirio’s parents are not your usual Mom and Dad. Intensely interested in the perfume business, she wasn’t always there for Pirio and her father treated her more like a troubled child than a loved one!
Several topics are also discussed within this novel that involve environmentalism, the perfume business, the business and legal aspects of fishing, conservation of whales and more. Elisabeth Elo has penned a fine novel that is both quaint and vividly adventurous. The plot is past-faced and characters rather unique – it’s definitely a new generation looking to save almost extinct levels of certain marine animals and fish – and they are just as passionate to make justice happen for both man and beast! Very nicely done, Ms. Elo!