By Dean Koontz
You are a member of a United Nations team
of scientists, working on the frigid Arctic ice cap. Your mission is to
blast away a chunk of ice, hook it up to waiting trawlers farther south,
and tow the berg down the North American coast, delivering fresh water to
Ballantine Books, 408 pp, 1995
You and six others are on the edge of
the cap, drilling holes and planting explosives, when a massive wave
caused by an underground earthquake hits the ice, rolling underneath it
and sending it bucking and heaving. After the wave passes, you realize
your piece of ice has detached from the cap, and you are now adrift, with
little food, scarce fuel for the warm snowmobiles, and sixty bombs set to
go off in twelve hours. You are in deep trouble. To make matters worse,
one of your colleagues is a psychotic murderer. But which one?
That is the premise of Icebound, a
classic adventure thriller by Dean Koontz, a true master of suspense.
Originally published in 1978 under the pen name of David Axton as Prison
of Ice, Koontz updated and re-released this under his own name in
1995. Itís a great marketing move, which he has done with prior novels.
Write several books early in your career under a pen name, then, once your
real name guarantees a bestseller, re-release those older books under your
real name, making money twice off the same book. Many readers, in fact,
may not even realize the book is a re-print of an older one and think
itís brand new. Itís a wonderful scheme, and it works.
Luckily for readers, Koontzís older
books, such as Icebound, are pretty good.