Reviewed by Stephanie Dagg for Readers' Favorite
The Ebay Plot by Charles A Salter is everything a modern thriller should be. Since we’ve all used ebay at one time or another, it’s something that we’re familiar with and that makes it that bit more relevant and interesting. Especially when we learn in the author’s note at the end that the book was inspired by real events. It begins with a murder so we’re gripped from the start. Major Brad Stout, single and living with his rather difficult sister, has to keep an eye on radiological sales being made through ebay. He works with the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute. He follows auctions to track down sellers and buyers of dubious items that could be put to terrorist purposes. Some of the people he’s following disappear and he realizes there’s someone very dangerous out there trying to put a dirty bomb together, and they’ll stop at nothing to get what they want. Brad is courageous and takes his duties seriously. However, he faces plenty of setbacks and frustrations on the way.
Salter creates an intricate, gripping plot and some equally intriguing characters. Brad is the perfect hero with his flaws but good intentions and genuine nature. He is a pretty nifty ebayer, timing when to make his bids to perfection and we could all pick up some useful hints! He’s a coper, dealing with some difficult and deadly situations, and addicted to healthy green tea. There are so many little details like that throughout the book, connected with the character or settings, and which all work to make the novel that much more real to us. The action is plausible and enthralling, and there’s even a little romance. Brad is delighted to become an ‘ebay detective’ at the story’s conclusion and there will be more adventures to come in this new career. This is a very successful, engrossing and enjoyable novel.