The story starts with Eric and Tracy traveling by a canoe up the new coast of California. They hope to catch up with Fallows and rescue his son Tim before he hooks up with his gang of killers around Santa Barbara. Along the way the two get waylaid by the pirate Rhino. Rhino is a former executive who was horribly scarred in trying to get through the Long Beach Halo. His first mate Angel is a former enemy of Eric’s from his days in Vietnam. He thought that he had killed her and now she wants to get revenge. Rhino keeps them alive because he suspects they know about Alabaster’s map.
An attack on Rhinos ship provides the opportunity for Eric and Tracy to escape. They make their way to one of the skyscrapers that stick out of the water where Los Angeles once stood. They find it inhabited by a community growing hydroponic vegetables that have hired another pirate by the name of Blackjack. Blackjack is a former pediatrician who now lives his dream of being a pirate. He tells them about Alabaster’s map. Back before the quake the government confiscated firearms of private citizens. Alabaster was a guardsman and knows the location of one of the storage sites. The guns could make anyone the undisputed king of California and Rhino wants them. Blackjack finds out that Angel is double crossing Rhino and she knows the location. He enlists Eric in his plan to kidnap Angel in exchange for helping Eric get to Santa Barbara.
The story takes Eric to Liars Cove. It is the Hearst Castle that is now a port run by Bebop. Bebop was a failed Holiday Inn lounge singer that built his own empire after the quake. A series of betrayal and intrigue bring the story to an explosive conclusion.
Pirates sailing the Sea of Los Angeles. How could anyone resist a story like that. This is the first book of the series that I read and also my favorite. Eric Ravensmith and his trusty crossbow bring plenty of action and excitement to this series. The main feature of this story is men living out their adolescent fantasies. Blackjack is dying of cancer and living out his pirate fantasies. Rhino lamented his boring name of John Smith and revels at his new persona of Rhino.
The story of course has plenty of violence and an obligatory graphic sex scene. It goes on for about four pages with descriptions like this, “He hurried a few more strokes, tensed his buttocks, and gushed bubbling lava into her.” When you start writing like this its actually a lot more funny than erotic. At least I think so. So this is another enjoyable adventure of Eric is the crazy island that was once California.