Emergency lights flashed from fire trucks, rescue vehicles, and ambulances. Dirty yellow smoke obscured the south end of the year-old elementary school. More emergency vehicles, lights blazing on and off, converged on the scene from nearby Kona. The chopper’s radio squawked horrific news – more than fifty children and teachers dead or injured. The mayor had activated the disaster management plan for the western side of the island. Nine-one-one operators were altering all medical personnel to report to their emergency stations.
Title: Fire and Vengeance (A Koa Kane Hawaiian Mystery #3)
Author: Robert McCaw
Published on: 26th May 2020
Genre: Mystery and Thrillers
After heavy rains, disaster strikes KonaWili school. The school is up in flames, many children and teachers have succumbed to the raging heat and fire. The school was built on a volcanic vent. Due to heavy rains, steam and toxic gases made their way out through the vent, destroying everything on their path.
A robot is sent into the destroyed school building to learn the extent of the disaster. A six-foot thick wall is found in the basement – the builders tried to fill up a fumarole with concrete. Koa visits the builder’s house only to find him dead – staged suicide. Koa and his teammates dig further and find more connections to the island’s rich and influential, including the mayor.
Robert McCaw has explored so many plot angles in this marvellous thriller – politics and greed for money, a secret that binds the politicians for more than four decades, Koa’s brother’s illness and much more. Fire and Vengeance is an unputdownable and riveting mystery.
I have read the previous book in this series – Off the Grid. In Off the Grid, we saw Koa facing his demons and making peace with his past. In Fire and Vengeance, Koa has a new challenge. Ikaika, Koa’s brother, is transferred to the Island prison. Ikaika has always been the black sheep of the family. The only person who’s been supportive of Ikaika’s felonies is their mother. As the story proceeds, Ikaika falls seriously ill and is diagnosed with a brain tumour. Will Koa finally mend things between him and Ikaika?
Closing of the volcanic vent with concrete and building a school over it is an idiotic and dangerous idea! Innocent lives are lost due to greed for money and dirty politics. As Koa investigates, he stumbles across a forty-year-old secret that’s holding the politicians and builders together. Blackmail goes a long way, doesn’t it?
Robert McCaw is a master storyteller. Be it the plot to story development or character portrayal, Fire and Vengeance is one of the best books I read in 2020. The mystery, or should I say mysteries(?) keeps you hooked on to the story. The suspense keeps you on the edge of your seat. Be prepared for a nail-biting adventure into the high and low of Hawaiian islands.
Though this is the third book in this series, it can be read as a standalone. I highly recommend you to read Fire and Vengeance.
Many thanks to Michelle of FSB Associates for the ARC.