- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: Zondervan Publishing Company; First Edition edition (September 1, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0310239591
- ISBN-13: 978-0310239598
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,480,701 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Yucatan Deep Paperback – September 1, 2002
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From Publishers Weekly
Cave diving is a relatively unusual topic for an evangelical Christian adventure novel, and this debut novel by Morrisey is chock-full of interesting characters and cliff-hanging suspense (not to mention enough brand-name details to satisfy any number of potential corporate sponsors). As members of the media look on, Mike Bryant and his mentor, Pete Wiley, attempt to log record dives in Mexico's Cenote X, the world's deepest known water-filled cave. Expedition Channel commentator Viktor Bellum is among the onlookers, but he has his own sinister reasons for wanting them to fail. Also watching is one of CBA fiction's more original characters, deaf physician Bridget Marceau. Mike and Bridget's lives are about to intersect with that of surfer-turned-missionary Elvis Hastings, making conversion scenes (one occurring underwater!) inevitable. The story leapfrogs through various locations, time periods and points of view, but there are enough common threads to keep the narrative woven together. The author, a certified Full Cave diver, has an affinity for detail that is both an asset and a liability: original descriptions are sometimes overwhelmed by technical information, repetition, cliches and overuse of brand names (including at least six for sunglasses). There are some memorable moments, as when Bridget and Mike have a knock-down, drag-out argument in sign language, but the novel's breast cancer subplot is a tired one. Some readers may also quibble with the author's simplistic take on answered prayer. However, Morrisey's fresh characterizations and flair for suspense should hook adventure readers.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Populated with colorful characters...the book conveys the Gospel message in scenes as compelling as the thrilling underwater action sequences. -- CBA Marketplace, October 2002
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Top Customer Reviews
The book also has a host of other well developed characters: Bridget (a trauma surgeon) and Mike's love interest, a surfer dude named Elvis, and many others including another cave diver with deep and dangerous secrets of his own. This is a great read!!
Join Mike Bryant as he goes for a record attempt, to dive Cenote X (pronounced seh-NO-tay as described in chapter) after a first attempt ends in tragedy for his friend, Pete. I thought it was interesting how a deaf woman came into play throughout the story. Mike wants to make it to the bottom of Cenote X, and Bridget (his deaf girlfriend) has a 2nd opinion. I think it is interesting how Bridget is a doctor in this as well. In the midst of all this, a man named Viktor Bellum has his own ideas, what they are, nobody knows. The person who stands out in this book is probably Elvis Hastings, surfer dude turned missionary, who has a lot of deep thought for Mike, who only wishes he had the kind of faith that Elvis has. It is very thought provoking about how we might witness to someone, when you see Elvis take something that Mike might say and turn it into his own illustration. It is awesome that Elvis is a missionary to the Mayan people and how he already uses sign language somewhat as a means of communicating.
This is a book of faith, adventure, and a search for something in the depths of Cenote X, what the Mayans call, K'uxulch'en, in their own language it means, "The Well of Sorrows." For the most part, it was awesome, but it probably could have been shortened. Other than that, I hope to see more of Tom Morrisey in the future. This is good stuff!
The story centers around Mike, a world-class cave-diver, and his love interest, Bridget Marceau--who happens to be deaf. The pair have a longstanding relationship that begins to falter when Mike decides to return to the site of a past disaster in a 1000 foot deep cenote (a sinkhole leading into a cave system). The tension builds as Mike finds his efforts hindered by Indian rituals, personal guilt, and a former acquaintance with a secret motive for guarding Cenote X.
The deep-diving scenes are well-written, full of awe and breathless moments. The people in the story are believable. Morrisey's writing is evocative, although an editor might have pared down some overwrought passages. Here's one sentence as an example: "Slowly, tenuously, its green skin folding and unfolding in the golden morning sunlight with wary hesitance, the iguana crept toward the ripe mango on the garden wall." Five separate words communicate the same idea...but full credit for descriptive ability and mood-setting.
"Yucatan Deep" builds suspense, communicates spiritual truths, and introduces us to likeable characters. Morrisey even throws in a few surprises at the end. Although the story falters in the middle, it is one worth reading. I look forward to Morrisey's future efforts.
As the book begins, there are at least three apparently unrelated stories going on simultaneously. Yet Mr. Morrisey manages to integrate every one of them into one of the most exciting adventure stories I've read in a long time.
While the bulk of the story is about diving -- something which Mr. Morrisey writes about with incredible detail and obvious personal experience -- so many other tensions are present: cross-cultural encounters with virtually aboriginal Mayans, relational issues between Mike Bryant (the hero of the story) and his girlfriend, and several characters wrestling with the very core issues of faith and Christianity.
Once started, this is a difficult book to put down. I look forward to reading other books by this author.
The balance of technical detail is near perfect, giving fascinating glimpses of the very real dangers of a deep-water dive without getting bogged down in those details.
Woven throughout is a simple message of Hope in Christ. It barely escapes becoming preachy at times, yet that "peachiness" is an integral part of character development, not a tack-on, so almost always slips through without becoming intrusive.
This book will intrigue those with a technical bent, but still be appreciated by those bored by technical detail.
Well worth reading!