Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Siren's Sting

The Siren’s Sting
By Miranda Darling
ISBN: 9781741759204
Allen and Unwin (uncorrected proof copy – Thanks A&U, really appreciate the review copy!!)
3 out of 5 Stars
Audience recommendation: Lovers of thrilling tales with a strong female lead character and set in exotic places. Nice easy ‘holiday’ read!

If you are looking for a great book to take with you on a holiday, and enjoy a good thriller with a strong female lead character – this is the one for you!

I should have held off on reading this book and taken it with me on my journey through Europe (heading off soon – YIP YAH). It is a good read while sitting in a boring airport or on a long flight because your imagination certainly gets to go on a fantastic trip around the world!

“Stevie Duveen exploded onto the pages of Miranda Darling’s thrilling debut novel
The Troika Dolls, taking on the Russian mafia and putting herself in terrible jeopardy in the process. Now Stevie is back at her discreet and dangerous best as the minder of the world’s greatest – and most temperamental - opera star and the terrified wife of a shipping tycoon whose son has been kidnapped.

The action swings from Sardinia in summer to diva season in Venice and to the billionaires’ playgrounds of Morocco and the Mediterranean as Somali pirates target and stalk cruising mega-yachts and their impossibly rich and glamourous passengers. With her mentor and boss David Rice seriously ill and his business in peril, Stevie must find who is behind the pirate attacks and why they will stop at nothing to bring down all she holds dear. As she poses as just another party girl on the lookout for a loaded husband, Stevie plays a deadly double game to detect – and destroy – the very heart of evil.”


This book has several positives - firstly, the exotic destinations that the main character, Stevie Duveen, gets to go to are beautifully brought to life thanks to the author’s skill at travel writing.

Secondly, I am always a fan of a tale where the female character is strong, independent, intelligent and can kick butt if need be!

And thirdly, there is nothing like a good old spy thriller novel to take your imagination away from the norm of reality!

Mind you, I must admit that I was a little more interested in Darling’s descriptions of the exotic locations the story is set – rather than care too much about who was behind the pirate attacks. I think that is simply due to my love of travel and my eagerness to learn about other countries, rather than her writing. I have not read Darling’s first novel
The Troika Dolls, so I did not fully understand some of the mentions of Stevie’s tales in Russia, however it didn’t hinder the overall enjoyment of this novel and it can be read as a stand alone book.

Overall I did enjoy the story of Stevie Duveen and her jaunts around Morocco, the Mediterranean and Venice while she tries to uncover who is behind pirate attacks on the high seas. I like how Darling has created a female character that is petite, loveable and independent  - she is not a ‘spy’ but a risk assessor who just manages to go above and beyond her role because she is a decent and caring person.

The Siren’s Sting was a great way to spend my lunch breaks at work! Throw into the tale some relationship highs and lows, a behind-the-scenes look at how the exceedingly wealthy live, and some characters that would make your blood boil - and you have an entertaining, adventurous read that stars a well-developed and dimensional character that, as I agree with others, 'is the female James Bond'!