cover image Thunder Beach

Thunder Beach

Michael Lister, Author . Tyrus $24.95 (232p) ISBN 978-1-93556-

In this less than impressive stand-alone crime novel from Lister (Double Exposure ), Merrick McKnight, an unemployed newspaper journalist, struggles to maintain his bearings after the deaths of his wife and their young son, Ty, in a car accident. In Panama City, Fla., where Merrick hopes to get a glimpse of Regan, the married stripper with whom he's been having an affair, who's in town with her weekend-biker husband, he spots a photo of Ty's much older half-sister, Casey, with whom he's lost touch, on the cover of the official magazine of Thunder Beach, Panama City's annual spring biker rally. When Casey is reported missing, Merrick goes on a hunt for the young woman that takes him in and out of strip clubs and seedy bars. A possible link with sex slavery raises the stakes. Some readers may find a misunderstanding that relates to Casey's fate a bit of a cheat, while the idealistic note struck at the end jars with the atmosphere of grim realism that pervades the rest of the book. (May)