Today it's a look at G.R. Mathews' underwater action/adventure books featuring Corin Hayes. I was really lucky to be able to listen to this audio Omnibus which collects the first three books and a bonus short story.

At the bottom of the ocean, the last of humanity survives in the corporation owned cities. Everything has a price; water, air, food, a place to sleep, and they have no place for those who can’t pay their way.

Corin Hayes, a former Special Forces naval pilot of one of the most advanced diving suits ever developed has nothing left. At the bottom of a beer glass finds peace for a few hours, trying to forget everything he has lost; his daughter, his wife, his friends, and his reputation.

Approached in his favourite bar, a beautiful woman presents him with an offer he'd be an absolute fool to turn down.

The job, the pay, and being able to use those hard earned skills, might be his last chance to redeem something from his life and salvage his self-respect. However, in the world beneath the waves there is no such thing as an easy life and Hayes is about to discover that some jobs can be real killers.

Corin Hayes Omnibus

This book contains 3 books and 1 short story. So there's: - 
Silent City
Nothing is ever Simple
Three times The Trouble
Additionally, there's a short story called The Passenger.

In The Silent City, we are introduced to Corin Hayes, an ex soldier who hires out his expertise with a fish suit (a special pressurised deep-sea diving suit). Corin is a man with issues, his daughter was murdered, his marriage wrecked, and he is the sole survivor of some disaster in which his crew died, dragged through the courts and is now pretty washed up. 

The story takes place in a dystopian world in which human kind is now living under the sea due to some catastrophe on the surface. 

Subsisting on a diet of alcohol and the odd job, he is subsequently hired by the aide of the mayor to carry out a consultant role, hiring him out to whoever needs needs him. 

In this first book he is sent to a city that is known as a silent City, which is an underwater city that is off the grid for whatever reason. However, disaster strikes and the city is destroyed, killing everyone there, well except Corin, who discovers that it was not an accident.

The second book, Nothing is ever Simple, Corin finds himself sent off again. As the title says nothing is ever simple and Corin finds himself involved with shady criminal gangs as he is kidnapped and forced to install an unknown device and steal some priceless artifact as payment for getting involved in a little altercation.

The third book sees Corin again in more hot water. This time he finds himself at the bottom of the ocean attempting to find a priceless artefact for another one of the cities. However, he soon finds that things are not as it seems and he is subsequently thrown in prison where he meets a young girl and her teenage nanny. He finds that they the youngest is the daughter of one of the leaders of a criminal gang. Determines not to leave the youngsters at the mercy of the opposing criminal gang and he saves them, returning them to their families, thus creating just that little more trouble and Corin sees himself in the middle of a Triad gang warfare.

This was such a fun series and collects books one to three. 

Corin is a brilliant character that you can't help but like, even though he constantly makes the wrong decision, but usually for the right reasons.

Initially, the books have a noirish feel to them, but as the books develop, it becomes more action adventure. 

The story takes place in an underwater environment following some unknown catastrophe which has left the earth desolate and uninhabitable.

There's some interesting world building and technical details, particularly in relation to the 'fish suit' which is a deep sea suit that was originally developed by the military to perform special ops missions, but following the end of the war, they were decommissioned with the owners of the suits carrying out specialised jobs in each of the cities. 

As this is an omnibus, it's interesting to watch the development of both the character and the writer. Initially, whilst the character is immediately likeable, he's a bit of a well trodden character. However, like I said, he is such an amenable character that you can't help but like him, and it's similar with the writing. Even though it's set in a science fiction background, there's a familiarity of noirish/action adventure stories, and as I do enjoy these kind of stories, it was refreshing to read this type of story. The books are never short on action and the pace and the plot of these stories make them an easy enjoyable read.

I initially came across G.R. Mathew's writing in Seven Deaths of An Empire and really enjoyed his Roman based fantasy so it was good to see this other side of his writing and also see how he got to where he is at currently.

As for the books themselves, they are really good. I enjoyed them, so much so that after  I had listened to the first books, I have gone on to buy the fourth in the series as I enjoyed the series so much. So you can see that I liked them!


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