Kurt Kamm,
Tunnel Visions
(MCM Publishing, 2014)

Kurt Kamm's Tunnel Visions is a book you will want to read in one sitting. Excellently written as a realistic-fiction thriller, Kamm takes the reader back and forth in time as the main character, firefighter/search & rescue team member Nick Carter, weaves his past and present together as eco-terrorists plot to destroy the water tunnels that bring liquid life to dry Los Angeles.

At first, the alternating present-past chapters were confusing, but by chapter 4, that method of organization became a welcome peek back into what makes Carter tick. Learning a little about his traumatic past with each look backwards, you begin to see why he is so driven to succeed in his chosen occupation of fire captain/search and rescue expert.

Lending truth to the fictional story, the author himself was a firefighter and investigator and had done his research well on the Sylmar Tunnel. Because Kamm had experienced so many of the situations delineated in the story, he made the plot totally believable. Once you get into the rhythm of the story's unfolding, it's almost impossible to put the book down for long. Plot twists and inevitable discoveries of people who are not what they seem keep you reading.

The realistic characters and plausible unfolding eco-terrorist drama hold your attention and make the book a real thriller. Unfortunately, the scenario of this type of terrorism is very possible in these times, going beyond people chaining themselves to construction equipment and speaking at meetings to real threats to the water delivery mechanism that affects the tender Southern California ecosystem.

Of course, no great thriller would be the same without a romance somewhere in there, and Kamm does not disappoint here either. Both Nick and his ATF special agent girlfriend have a lot to learn about love and life. You wonder at times whether this romance is doomed, as he just can't seem to commit.

I truly enjoyed reading this book. I recommend it to anyone who likes realistic fiction and edge-of-your-seat law enforcement investigations. There are twists and turns you just can't predict and some very surprising events. Pick it up ASAP and sit down for a thrilling ride through Southern California's water-starved tunnel systems.

Now I need to go back and read Kamm's other books and keep an eye out for any new ones. This book made me a believer.

book review by
Anne Tenaglia

20 December 2014

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