Morrison’s got the magic touch with science-grounded action adventure. He delves deep into disaster fiction, as well as the hearts of his characters, with the precision of a surgeon’s scalpel. Protagonist Kai Tanaka races across Honolulu, torn between his directive and his heart, as he tries to outrace a cataclysm that will wipe out the island. A compressed timeframe, an imminent disaster that threatens millions of lives and characters rang-ing from the heroic to the obnoxious amp up the tension in a breathtaking run to salvation. If readers can only grab one book this year — make it this one.
Even when a seismic disturbance from the central Pacific registers in Honolulu, Kai Tanaka, the director of the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, isn’t overly worried about his wife and daughter’s visit to Waikiki. However, when the Center loses contact with Christmas Island, Kai realizes that Hawaii is facing an epic disaster as a series of tsunamis surge towards them, and he has just 60 minutes to save millions of lives — including those of his own family. (POCKET, Dec., 384 pp., $5.99)