Sirk TV Book Review: TROPIC SQUALL [BQB Publishing]
The essence of a voyage is seeing a journey formulate inside the central character’s mind. Whether it is redemption or regret, it is about making you feel something for his or her plight. “Tropical Squall” [Ben Cherot/BQB Publishing/348pgs] uses this reflection as a personification of a transcendence waiting to gestate. The first mate simply wants to escape from everything that reeks of domestic tranquility or restriction. He signs onto a steamer heading to Hispaniola in an effort to get away from a looming marriage. The expected but still effective angle of the book is a woman who must accompany cargo against her better judgment on a ship full of sea dogs. Everything goes well for a while but eventually tragedy befalls the crew. The element of the psychology pushes the mate and the woman apart but the fallout and eventual legality in Haiti which dictates the hand is an interesting crux. Moving beyond this tragedy allows for some very soulful and true exchanges between the main characters without seeming melodramatic. Comedy comes through in a sardonic way in the form if the new captain who steers the ship back into the maw of fate as Hurricane Andrew approaches. The emotional investment, even through internal monologue, offers a distinct voice. When fate befalls our heroine when the storm actually strikes, it makes the loss much more infinite. While the aspect of this can be overwrought it plays more with an intent of subtext.