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Reviewed by Stefan Vucak for Readers' Favorite
The research vessel ‘Franklin’ spots its deep submergence vehicle surfacing from the Arctic Ocean after two days without contact and finds it empty. Then, all contact is lost with the ‘Franklin’. A special Coast Guard team is sent to investigate and they board a deserted ship. The DSV was spying on a Russian secret research platform plagued by unknown faults that had no rational explanation. The Russians had captured the ‘Franklin’s’ crew and then killed them to prevent the Americans from finding a mysterious object resting on the bottom of the sea, one not of earthly design. Determined to keep their research secret, the Russians decide to eliminate the Coast Guard team, but the attack is repulsed. Wanting to recover the strange object for themselves, the Americans decide to destroy the platform, which leads to an intriguing climax.
Polar Melt is a fast-paced, action-filled novel that takes readers on a wild ride of adventures, culminating in a haunting ending that leaves lots of room for pondering if man is really alone in the cosmos. Martin Roy Hill’s technical mastery of military technology and procedures, with a tantalizing hint of something unearthly, provides a firm framework for the characters, supported by some very good writing and dialogue. The book does not delve deeply into its characters, but readers are given enough to bond with those who make the decisions, whether American or Russian. The appearance of a strange Inuit woman aboard the ‘Franklin’ and the Russian platform adds an air of mystery until the very end. Polar Melt compels readers to keep going until the final page, leaving them satisfied.