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Those are the last words uttered by Commander Bob Cartwright in September 1976, just before all communication with the crew of Apollo 18 is inexplicably lost during the astronauts' first moonwalk. Frantic attempts to re-establish communications with the astronauts are unsuccessful. Three days later, however, as NASA is scrambling to put together a rescue mission, astronomers detect a burn of the service propulsion system, and, on schedule, but still in eerie silence, the command module ...
Those are the last words uttered by Commander Bob Cartwright in September 1976, just before all communication with the crew of Apollo 18 is inexplicably lost during the astronauts' first moonwalk. Frantic attempts to re-establish communications with the astronauts are unsuccessful. Three days later, however, as NASA is scrambling to put together a rescue mission, astronomers detect a burn of the service propulsion system, and, on schedule, but still in eerie silence, the command module begins its return transit, culminating in the welcome sight of the capsule descending majestically beneath a trio of parachutes into the South Pacific.
But when the hatch is opened, the navy divers tasked with assisting the astronauts into the recovery helicopter make a gruesome discovery. The bodies of the three men inside have been burned beyond recognition, victims of a failed heat shield. And with them has died any chance of learning the meaning of Cartwright's enigmatic last statement or what transpired during those three blacked out days in the Mare Crisium, or Sea of Crises.
Unfortunately, unless and until man returns to the moon, it's a mystery that will remain forever unsolved.
Or will it?
Thirty-six years later, Cartwright's sons make a shocking discovery: The capsule that came down in the Pacific Ocean with three charred remains was not their father's capsule. And the body they buried all those years before was not their father.
What they've uncovered puts the three brothers on the run, chased by a ruthless group who will stop at nothing to preserve the secret behind the fate of the Apollo 18 astronauts. The brothers will need to set aside past differences and pool their talents if they are to stay alive and unravel the mystery behind what really happened in the Sea of Crises.
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It was once said, "In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you get through, but how many can get through you."
This book blew me away. I have never read anything close to this that had me guessing as much as this book did.
Commander Bob Cartwright was an astronaut and had been on a space mission. As the capsule was returning to earth the heat shield had failed and the three bodies inside were burnt beyond recognition.
Years later one of Cartwright son's discovered information and called his two brothers to meet him. He found evidence that it might not be their father who was in the capsule. But if that was true, then what had happened to their dad?
I really liked this book and the development of each character. The author really spent a lot of time in taking totaly different personalities and making them work as one unit.
Excellent Read and worth five stars.
Posted by Whispering Winds Book Reviews at 9:39 AM No comments:
Posted April 3, 2013
I first heard about this book when I got an email from the author himself, Marty Steere. I was so ecstatic to be sought out by an author and requested to read and review his book. As this was my first author request, I took my time to read, re-read and re-re-read the book until I practically knew the plot line by heart. Conspiracy theories have always intrigued me, even the really crazy ones, and this one got me hook, line and sinker. The story starts with Nate Cartwright, eldest son of Bob Cartwright (fallen astronaut of the Apollo 18 mission). Nate gets a call from his little brother Peter to pick him up from the airport. Peter is a paranoid reporter (rightly so), who calls his big brother for help. He thinks he's being watched and followed and he is right. Peter tells Nate his discoveries about the Apollo 18 mission that took their father and the lives of two other astronauts. After an shocking and horrendous warning from a group called the Organization, Nate and Peter search for their other brother Matt (who has his own mysterious background). The brothers set off in search for more answers and this sets off a chain of events that lead to shoot outs, fast car chases, and an even more shocking discovery. About halfway through the book, when the brothers, plus the family of the other two astronauts, finally have enough pieces of the puzzle, there's a good chunk that tells the real story of what happened during the Apollo 18 mission. I found this portion of the book very fascinating! Marty Steere did a very good job slipping in the past in between the present. The characters were fully developed with their own complex backgrounds. The storytelling is amazing! I felt like I was there with the characters; experiencing the rush of adrenaline as bullets whizzed by and shifting the car into gear to outrun the Organization's cronies. I liked that pace of the story and the sudden turn of events that kept my interest throughout the book. I especially like the "subtle" hints of romantic possibility between Nate and Maggie, Major Dayton's daughter. The last third of the book was, in my opinion, the best cat and mouse game between the head of the Organization and a group of people who want to know the truth.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 20, 2013
I was lucky to receive a reviewer's copy from the author for this book. This book has both a lot of good parts and some not so good. The premise of the book is that there was an additional Apollo mission to the moon in the mid 1970's (Apollo 18). During that mission, NASA lost contact with the moon module and no further contact was made until it splashed down on Earth days later with the inside of the capule "fried" with three burnt bodies inside.
Flashforward to the present and Nate Cartwright, son of one of the Apollo 18 astronuats gets a desperate call from his brother Peter to pick him up at the airport. Peter tells him he is being followed by bad people. When Nate meets Peter he tells him he has been investigating documentation from the Apollo 18 flight and has proof that the capsule that was recovered, was not the capsule that was sent up.
When they get home they are beset on by some bad guys who give them a warning to stop looking into the Apollo 18 mission. Nate and Peter are not deterred and decide to locate their brother Matt for help. Matt is some sort of secret operative living in hiding who had been declared dead several years prior. Matt wants to help his brothers learn what happened to their father and they go in search of answers. Having ignored the bad guys' warnings they are now pursued by the bad guys.
Now what was really good about the book. The author spends roughly a third of the book telling the story of what happened to the Apollo 18 crew on the moon and this part of the book is very compelling and these pages fly by really quickly for the reader. Now for the not so good. The rest of the book is kind of boring and seems to copy from a lot of other stories. Matt turns out to be a type of unstoppable Jason Bourne and he seems to get weaponry and explosives out of thin air. We have seen a lot of this before in Die Hard and Rambo movies.
Had the book been solely been the story on the moon, I could easily have given it five stars. The rest of the book brings down my rating to three stars.
Posted January 20, 2013
This book caught my interest almost immediately, which I loved. Nate received a call from his brother, Peter, late at night asking to be picked up from the airport. He is positive he is being followed. Nate picks him up, asking why his normally calm and levelheaded brother would be so paranoid. Peter, who is a writer, tells him he is finally writing the book he has always wanted to write...the one about the Apollo 18 space mission. Their father was the commander of the mission and died during re-entry when the modules heat shield failed and the men were basically cooked to death. In doing his research, especially with the help of a Freedom of Information Act inquiry, he obtained documents and photos never seen by the public. In examining one photo (a particularly gruesome one of the inside of the module when it was opened to get the astronauts out) he realizes that the module number is wrong. The one in the photo is the one that was supposed to be used in the cancelled Apollo 19 mission, not the one sent up to the moon with his dad. Of course now he is questioning what is really going on and if the body they buried was in fact his father. His investigating triggered an entire secret government agency to try to contain him and his information. From the moment Nate and Peter got home to find what they THOUGHT was Nate's dog decapitated and hanging from a hook as a warning, it was constant action and intrigue.
I honestly loved reading this book because I love a book that can not only catch your interest, but keep it all the way to the last page. This book managed to do that in spades. The characters were all fantastic and easy to like, even the bad guys, lol. It is a very well written book, and the ending was FANTASTIC. I loved learning the true fate of the men of the Apollo 18 mission in Mr. Steere's story. It would make a great movie! Five stars and I'd definitely read more from this talented author.
Posted July 2, 2012
The National Aeronautics Space and Administration lied and now some must pay with their lives.
The tragic loss of the crew during re-entry of the Apollo 18 mission hits home as suddenly as an unknown group tries to kill one of the astronaut’s sons. On the run from “The Organization, ” the protagonists out to preserve a race to the moon secret and their own government that wants to leave their secrets buried, Commander Bob Cartwright’s sons can’t stop their work to uncover the conspiracy or they will die. This fast-paced tale will leave the reader wondering what else has been covered up.
Posted May 28, 2012
Reviewed by Laura Carter for Readers Favorite
In 1976 the last of NASA’s manned lunar missions, Apollo 18, was unsuccessful in its return to earth and all three astronauts were killed during the attempt. This tragedy meant that no one ever found out what commander Bob Cartwright meant when he said “that shouldn’t be here” shortly before communications were lost. 36 years later, Bob Cartwright’s sons uncover a shocking secret - the capsule that was found and contained what was believed to be the remains of the Apollo 18 astronauts was not actually the capsule for the Apollo 18. As the brothers investigate the truth of the past events, they find themselves up against a secret government agency that will go to any lengths to keep the truth covered.
"Sea of Crises" is an engaging, intriguing mystery that will leave you hanging on the writer's every word, as you follow the characters on their mission to uncover the truth. The action is non-stop and fast-paced and is mixed with just the right amount of mystery to make a perfect thriller. Marty Steere has written a book that will leave readers desperate for more of his brilliant writing style. The characters are well-conceived and developed and complement each other perfectly. From investigative journalist Peter to smart workaholic Nate and finally Matt, an ex-member of the very organization that is hunting them down, each character brings their own edge to the book. "Sea of Crises" is so stunning a read that you will be unable to stop reading until the very end.
Posted May 28, 2012
Reviewed by Anne B. for Readers Favorite
Our story begins with action and suspense. Nate Cartwright receives a mysterious phone call from Peter, his brother. Peter thought he was being followed and that it had something to do with his project. The project was connected to Apollo 18 whose commander was their father, Bob Cartwright. It was obvious someone did not want anyone to dig deeper into the Apollo disaster. What did all of this have to do with the subcommittee on strategic forces? What really happened to the Apollo 18 crew? Why did Commander Bob Cartwright utter the words “That shouldn’t be there?” How can a person not get caught up in this book? I have always been fascinated with the space program. In reality Mission Apollo 18 was canceled but what if it really did take place? What if the mission landed on the moon but the crew was never heard from again? What if there was a cover up?
Author Marty Steere is brilliant! His plot is plausible, the characters are realistic, and the writing is superb. My intention is not to give away too much of the plot in my summary. I want the readers to pick up their own copy of this book. Once they begin reading, like me, they will not want to put this book down. I was not familiar with Marty Steere and had no idea what to expect from his book. He impressed me. Steere manages to keep the characters fresh and the suspense building, leading to a crescendo ending.
Posted May 28, 2012
Reviewed by Terri Tumlin for Readers Favorite
Nate Cartwright worked too hard. He always had. As first a lawyer and then as a private consultant, he was successful but at the cost of a personal life. That was the most serious problem with his existence until the night Peter called from the airport. Peter, a writer and one of his twin younger brothers, had begun a project looking into the story of the ill-fated flight of Apollo 18 on which their father died. Now he was being followed by persons unknown and knew he was in trouble. After the two brothers receive a terrifying bloody warning, they are forced onto a cross-country odyssey, collecting other relatives of the Apollo 18 crew and trying to stay alive long enough to unravel the mystery. Among those they collect is Peter’s estranged twin brother who may have insights into what is really going on.
Marty Steere has written a page turner of a story combining elements of a classic thriller with a well-researched techno novel. His knowledge of the technology and the world of lunar expeditions is accurate. His human conflicts among the protagonist and his fleeing band are believable and riveting. And, true to the best of thrillers, the bad guys are powerful and seemingly unstoppable. The central section of the novel, which takes place back in the time of the Apollo project, blends well with the material relating to the current day. Throughout, the writing is strong and very readable. This is a very enjoyable book and I highly recommend it.
Posted May 28, 2012
Reviewed by Alice D. for Readers Favorite
On September 28, 1976, astronaut Bob Cartwright, as the commander of the Apollo 18 lunar spacecraft, was walking on the moon's surface with fellow astronaut Mason Gale when he suddenly said, "That shouldn't be here". Immediately the transmissions from space stopped and sometime later, the spacecraft returned with all three astronauts inside burned to a crisp. At that terrible moment in time, Bob Cartwright's son Ned was almost twelve years old and his twins, Peter and Matthew were celebrating their tenth birthdays. Now Peter is investigating what really happened back then and he is in danger. He is being followed home from Minneapolis, Minnesota, where Mason Gale's sister and mother still live. Nate and Peter's brother Matthew was supposedly killed in an air crash years before, but they find him alive, living covertly in Idaho after resigning from the secret government group called The Organization. Peter, Nate, Nate's dog Buster, and Matthew travel to Maine to meet with third Apollo astronaut Stephen Dayton's daughter Margaret who was only a baby when her father was killed. But who is following the Cartwright brothers and why?
"Sea of Crises" or Mare Crisium is the name of the moon's area where Astronaut Bob Cartwright sees something that did not belong there. It is also the name of this thriller of a book that has bad guys and good guys aplenty and a few storyline surprises as well. The book is well-formatted and well-written, the characters are totally believable but not always likeable, and the plot proceeds with surprising twists and turns to the story's last pages. Readers will truly enjoy this first-rate read that covers past and present and merges them well together. "Sea of Crises" is a read that is not to be missed!
Posted May 28, 2012
Reviewed by Stephanie D. for Readers Favorite
"Sea of Crises" by Marty Steere is a nailbiting story! In reality, Apollo 18 never took place. It was one of the scheduled moon trips that NASA cancelled. But in this book it happens and the three astronauts, Cartwright, Gale and Dayton, are found incinerated in the landing capsule that comes back to earth. What exactly went wrong? Certain events embark Cartwright’s son Nate, and his twin brothers Peter and the estranged and elusive Matt, on a quest to find out what really happened to their father. This sets them on a path they could never have imagined having to take. There is intrigue, deception and murder on the way, but also closeness, friendship and relationship building. The brothers are up against fear, suspicion and The Organization.
The interaction between the three brothers is almost as fascinating as the main line of events. Nate is a 40-something workaholic with only Buster the dog as company since he never makes the time for a private life. Peter has had battles of his own as a homosexual and Matt disappeared without saying goodbye to deal with his own demons. The Cartwrights have a lot of work to do to rebuild their family but finally they succeed in a way they could never have thought possible and achieve happiness. The characterization of the novel is excellent. The people we meet are rounded and plausible. The action sweeps us along and this is the sort of book it is hard to put down.
Posted December 5, 2013
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Posted October 1, 2012
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Posted December 24, 2013
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