By: Matthew Mather
Narrated by: Tom Taylorson
Length: 10 hrs and 18 mins
Release date: 04-02-19
Publisher: Blackstone Publishing
Genre: Adventure, Mystery, Suspense
My Rating: 4.0 of 5.0 Overall; Story 4.0, Narration 4.25.
A routine commercial flight disappears over the North Pole. No wreckage. No transponder signals.
Mitch Matthews is writer struggling to make ends meet when his wife's brother offers them a first-class seat on a flight from Hong Kong to New York. When his wife needs to stay behind, it becomes an opportunity for some quality daddy-daughter time with his five-year-old Lilly. At check-in, they run into a strange Norwegian arguing with a huge Russian. A mysterious redhead is guarding a package in the business lounge. But everything is fine...right up until the event.
Within hours of Allied Airlines 695 disappearing, a massive international search is launched. Aircraft and ships are dispatched from Russia, America, Canada, and Norway. How can a modern airliner simply vanish in one of the most heavily monitored places on Earth?
Global tensions rise. The media and grieving families whip into a frenzy. The armed forces of America and Russia tip the world toward the brink of an apocalyptic war.
Weeks later, found on the ice in a chance discovery, the journal of Mitch Matthews reveals the incredible truth behind the disappearance of Allied 695, and what really happened in the Polar Vortex.
©2019 Matthew Mather (P)2019 Blackstone Publishing
Mitch Matthews leaves his wife in Hong Kong while he takes a flight with their five-year old daughter, Lily, to return to their home in New York. The flight pilot is his wife’s brother, who is known to have a drinking problem and possible anger issues regarding Mitch. As a struggling writer, Mitch journals his observations of other passengers, his surroundings, and the events that occur.
Mitch’s brother-in-law allows Mitch and Lilly the rare opportunity to visit in the pilot’s cabin. They learn a little about the plane and its route before the rotation of crew has them returning to their seats. They fall asleep and wake to find the plane has crashed on the ice of the north pole.
A handful of passengers, including several dubious characters, must work together to try to survive the hostile environment. This is more edgy as there are suspicions of sabotage that brought the plane down and has inhibited the ability to communicate the location of the crash. Several conspiracy theories abound.
There was a lot in the story that was a stretch to believe and the dreariness of the situation made it almost unpleasant to continue. However, I enjoyed the mystery and the unfolding of the final scenes. I did guess the important passenger although not the reason for the attack. I also like the use of the journal entries being used by the searchers to find the plane and determine the cause of the crash. I would recommend this story to fans of adventure (willing to stretch) and mystery stories.
Audio Notes: Tom Taylorson is a new narrator to me. I enjoyed the distinct voices as well as the tone that fit the narrative style of the story. The audio enhanced my enjoyment of the story.