Saturday, July 15, 2023

Drowning by T.J. Newman is the Best Movie You'll Read This Summer

By Scott D. Parker

From the opening, harrowing moments of the first three chapters to the last 30 minutes of the audiobook, this book did not let up.

A few weeks ago, I finished T. J. Newman’s debut, FALLING and eagerly jumped into her brand-new book, DROWNING. In the book, a plane suffers mechanical failure two minutes after takeoff from Honolulu and crashes into the ocean.

Unlike those famous airplane disaster movies from the 1970s that takes a quarter of the movie to introduce the characters and get the plane in the air, Newman puts you on the plane just after takeoff from the first sentence. By Chapter 3, the plane is down.

And those three chapters are incredibly harrowing and edge-of-your-seat suspenseful. How suspenseful you might ask? Suspenseful enough to elicit an emotional response. Heart pounding in the chest and a sting of tears in the eyes.

And that was only the beginning.

The race against time aspect never let up, even in the flashbacks where we see what makes these three individuals tick. A father and his daughter are on the plane as it goes down. The estranged wife is an underwater construction expert. Naturally, you can see how this goes. Even the other characters were given enough to make you root for them or not.

But the drama was organic and relentless.

By the end of the audiobook, I had a driveway moment where I slowed the car down. I then sat in my garage in Houston in the summer for about five minutes as I finished a chapter. When I walked into the house, my wife asked if I was just sitting in the garage. “Yeah,” I confessed, “and I’m going to have to finish this book now.”

I did. And it’s one of the best books I’ve read in a long time.

You won’t need to wait for the movie. You can see it all in your mind. It’s a definite summer blockbuster of a story.

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