cover image The Devil’s Wind: A Spider John Mystery

The Devil’s Wind: A Spider John Mystery

Steve Goble. Seventh Street, $15.95 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-63388-484-7

Goble’s excellent second historical featuring pirate Spider John Rush improves on its predecessor, 2017’s The Bloody Black Flag. In 1723, Spider John is lying low in Port Royal, Jamaica, hoping to put his pirate career behind him, until someone recognizes him in a crowd witnessing the hanging of a former shipmate; he barely escapes capture before boarding a merchant vessel bound for Boston, the Redemption. That one of the passengers is Sam Smoke, who previously sailed with Ned Low, a pirate even more vicious than Blackbeard, unsettles John, and he finds himself in more peril after a shooting death in a locked room, a tragedy that necessitates a visit to the ship from members of a Royal Navy frigate escorting the Redemption. Though the victim appears to have shot himself, John spots evidence to the contrary and embarks on a search for the killer while trying to remain at liberty. Goble adroitly combines action and deduction. [em]Agent: Evan Marshall, Evan Marshall Agency. (Sept.) [/em]