Crashers: A Thriller

Crashers: A Thriller

by Dana Haynes

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Whenever a plane goes down in the U.S., a "Go Team" made up of experts is assembled by the NTSB to investigate. Those people - each of them a leading expert in a specific area - are known as informally as "Crashers."

When a passenger plane, a Vermeer One Eleven, slams into the ground outside Portland, Oregon, a team is quickly assembled to investigate the cause. Under the leadership of the IIC (Investigator in Charge), Leonard "Tommy" Tomzak, the team gets to work as fast as possible. But this time it's different. This time, the plane was brought down deliberately, without leaving a trace, and this was only a trial run.

In LA, Daria Gibron - a former Shin Bet agent, now under the protection of the FBI- spots a group of suspicious-looking men. Missing her former life of action, she attaches herself to them only to learn that, somehow, they were responsble for the plane crash and are preparing for another action. While her FBI handler tries to find her and save her, Daria risks her life to try to get close enough to learn what's going on and thwart the coming terrorist action. But time is running out and her cover story is running thin.

Dana Haynes' novel Crashers is a fresh and utterly compelling thriller, an original mix of action, investigation and a brilliant cast of characters that grabs the reader in the way few novels can and fewer do.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781429922104
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 06/22/2010
Series: Crashers , #1
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 173,636
File size: 383 KB

About the Author

Dana Haynes was, for more than twenty years, a journalist and editor at several newspapers in Oregon. Under the name Conrad Haynes, he published three traditional mysteries in the late '80s. He works for a local community college and lives in Portland, Oregon. Crashers is his first thriller.

Dana Haynes was, for more than twenty years, a journalist and editor at several newspapers in Oregon. He works for a local community college and lives in Portland, Oregon.  He is the author of the thrillers Crashers and Breaking Point.

Read an Excerpt


By Dana Haynes

St. Martin's Press

Copyright © 2010 Dana Haynes
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4299-2210-4


DENNIS SILVERMAN AND MEGHAN Danvers woke up almost simultaneously.

As the rest of Portland, Oregon, was getting ready for dinner or making the commute home, Dennis and Meghan rolled out of their beds. They had never met and would never meet. They were just two people waking up in Portland, Oregon, on a sunny and glorious late-afternoon Monday in March. Dennis, in the spendy, gentrified Pearl District, third floor of a confectionary factory turned into half-a-million-dollar condos. Meghan, in the Residence Inn at Portland International Airport.

Dennis had been so keyed up, he'd slept barely three hours. He started his day by scanning a half-dozen blogs on his homemade laptop, while he downed two Red Bulls and two Snickers, his traditional breakfast. MTV played in the background but he hardly noticed. He was so nervous, his hands shook. And every time he caught a glimpse of himself in the mirror, he grinned.

This was going to be a day. A hell of a day. A day people would remember. A day the media whores would recount on its anniversary and people would ask: where were you when you heard?

Meghan awoke to the sound of a travel alarm. She drank bottled water she'd set out the night before, then went to work on one hundred crunches, one hundred push-ups with her bare feet up on one of the hotel-room chairs. CNN played in the background but she hardly noticed.

She showered, called her husband, James, in Reston, Virginia. They talked for exactly two minutes about nothing in particular. The baby was fine. The weather was crappy in Virginia. March 7, and there was black ice everywhere. Meghan pushed aside the hotel-room curtains and squinted into the lovely evening, the sun peeking over the West Hills, illuminating the radiant Mount Hood to the east, topped year-round in snow.

They said "I love you" and hung up.


Ninety minutes later, Meghan Danvers found herself standing in the shadow of her very own jet airliner. It wasn't "hers" hers, but she was the pilot and the senior officer, so, as far as she was concerned, the mammoth Vermeer 111 was all hers.

She breathed in the slightly salty tang of the Columbia River, just a little to the north, and studied the wispy hints of clouds that dotted the sky. One octa, she said to herself: only one eighth of the way toward being overcast.

"It's a looker." Russ Kazmanski noted the boss's attention on the sky.

"Sweet," Meghan said. She wore the navy Eisenhower jacket and matching trousers of CascadeAir. Tall and willow thin, the uniform hung nicely on her athletic frame. Russ wore the same, although he was short and paunchy, and she doubted that he had ever ironed his trousers.

"Almost no wind up top," she said. "Day like this, must be what it's like flying in outer space."

Russ squinted up at her, smiling. He knelt in the shadow of the landing gear of the colossal 111, about the size of a Boeing 737. Above their heads, the retractable gangplank of Terminal C4 began inching out, touching the skin of their four-engine wide-body. "You a NASA wannabe, Skip?"

"Damn straight." Meghan canted her head, running her hand through her hair, which she wore tightly cropped. She was African American; Russ was white. It dawned on her that less than one generation ago, no white pilot — especially one eleven years her elder — would have called a black woman "Skip." "Stewardess," maybe.

He grinned. "No kidding?"

"I almost made the program, eight or nine years ago. I never told you that?"

"Nope." The laptop at Russ's knee chimed. It sat on the cool, gritty tarmac, its infrared emitter aimed at a portal in the underbelly of the jet, ten feet directly over his head. The emitter, shaped like a penlight and shining in the invisible range, was attached to the laptop by a gooseneck flex tube. The underbelly portal was marked GAMELAN. "They screwed up, not taking you. You'd've been a hit with the Flash Gordon set."

She smiled at the kneeling man. "Why, Kazmanski. That's the sweetest thing anyone's ever said to me."

Russ made a fist and blew into it. It had hit fifty-two today, but with the sun going down, the temperature was getting ready to fall like a Warner Bros. anvil.

Russ Kazmanski had been the copilot with Meghan Danvers for a week now, running a three-legged pattern from PDX to LAX to Sea-Tac and back again. They were two days away from a four-day layover in Los Angeles, before starting the rotation all over. Russ had enjoyed his week of flying the right-hand seat with the skip and looked forward to staying on this assignment.

"What's the FDR say?" Meghan asked, and knelt, too, to get a better angle on the laptop screen linked by microwave to the flight data recorder. There was a solid, almost masculine quality to her movements, Russ noted. Like most pilots, she exuded confidence. Both kneeling, it was easier to speak over the sounds of the food-services truck that had just arrived.

"Nine hundred and seventy-one telltales are green-for-go," he said, tapping the keyboard at his feet, which was reading information from the Gamelan flight data recorder. "And we got two yellow. No reds."

"The yellows?" Meghan craned her neck to see from Russ's angle.

"Nothing major. The Gamelan says we need to have one of the nodes of the transponder looked at within the next seven thousand five hundred miles, or five cycles." A cycle is one leg of a journey; a takeoff, flight, and landing. "Also, we got a little blip on the port elevator. The box says check it within seven cycles."

Meghan shook her head. "That is the damnedest thing I've ever seen."

"No shit." Back in the day, checking out almost 2,000 systems would've taken a weekend. The new flight data recorder being released by Gamelan Industries made the preflight check in twenty minutes. Russ began disassembling the transmitter. "Let's hear it for technology. This gadget is made right here in Portland, you know."

He closed the laptop, picked it up. His knees popped as he stood straight.

"Okay, I'm on the walkaround," Meghan said. "You want to start on the preflight?"

"I'm on it." He glanced around, admired the cerulean sky and the snowy slopes of Mount Hood. They were an hour away from sunset and the mountain glowed like it was radioactive. "I could retire here."

"Tell me that when it's raining," Meghan Danvers said, and began walking around her three-story-tall bird.


Dennis Silverman didn't bother hiding. He drove his Outback off the interstate and into the rest area. Harsh white lights on very tall poles illuminated the blacktop area. The only other vehicles in sight in were two double-long truck-and-trailer rigs, a handful of RVs and campers, and one dilapidated Volkswagen Bug with a couple of twenty-somethings in tie-dyed shirts and raggedly cuffed jeans, leaning on the hood and poring over a badly folded map of the Pacific Northwest. They looked like they'd just stepped out of 1972. Proof of a fold in the time stream, Dennis thought.

He was about equal distance between Portland and Salem, the state capital. A serrated copse of Douglas firs separated the rest area from I-5 but did a poor job of keeping down the drone of highway traffic. Dennis had come here many other times in the last few months. The first few weeks, he'd parked at one end and waited, then at the other end for a little while. He'd finally found exactly the spot he needed. He checked his waterproof, pressure-proof watch; he'd gone online twice that morning to make sure his watch was on the money. He had used a U.S. Navy Web site to confirm the time. There was very little room for error in this game.

Satisfied, he strolled to the rear of the Outback, opened the hatch, and pulled out a laptop computer and a device that looked like a long microphone attached to a short tripod. He returned to the front of his SUV and hiked himself up onto the hood, feeling the heat of the engine through his trousers. He set up the tripod on the hood next to him, attached it to the laptop via a USB port, popped the lid, and booted up. The twenty-somethings had stopped trying to read the map and were making out. The truck drivers cared for little that happened outside their cabs. If the RV crowd was paying attention, Dennis couldn't tell. And he wasn't all that concerned anyway.

A couple of squirrels were nosing around, three parking spaces away. Dennis dug a Ziploc bag out of his REI ski jacket and sprinkled walnuts on the ground. Three more squirrels hopped in his direction.

As the laptop screen began to glow, he grinned and removed his wire-rimmed glasses, cleaning them on the untucked bottom of his Farscape T-shirt, which hung below the ski jacket. He'd thought about dressing up for the occasion, knowing something momentous was about to happen, even if no one else did. It's important to look businesslike when you're about to change history. But in the end he left the house with his one suit, one dress shirt, and one tie hanging forgotten from the hook on the bathroom door. He'd made it halfway to the rest stop before he remembered. He smiled, realizing that when he told the story of this day, he'd be wearing a really sharp suit.

He glanced at the hippies and the truckers. Let them stare. Sure, he was about to commit a crime. And in Oregon, it was a capital offense. But so what? No one here today would recognize his crime, or realize that anything bad was going on. Hell, Dennis thought, there wasn't even a good word for the crime he was about to commit. They'd have to come up with a name for it. Maybe they'd call it a silverman. Maybe he was about to commit first-degree silverman.

The images on the screen clarified themselves. Dennis tapped madly at the keyboard, making no mistakes, no type-overs or go-backs. He'd done this a thousand times in practice and he knew exactly what he was doing.

Time to change the world.


Fifteen minutes later, Annie Colvin, the chief flight attendant for Flight 818, rapped on the cabin door and poked her head in. "Got 'em corralled," she said, in the tone a preschool teacher uses to announce that naptime has commenced. "Ready when you are."

In the left-hand seat, Meghan Danvers nodded and looked back over her shoulder. "Thanks. Tower's giving us the hold sign but we're up next."

Annie Colvin started to back out, then stopped. "Anybody want anything before I buckle up?"

Meghan said, "No, thanks. I'm good."

Russ Kazmanski turned as far as he could in the cumbersome copilot's chair. "I'll take some coffee, if you've got it brewed up."

"Hang on," she said and backed out.

"Decaf!" Russ called, hoping she heard him. "That's all I need, the jangles."

"Careful," Meghan warned playfully, and rolled her eyes, the color of nutmeg, toward the ceiling panel equidistant between their seats. The cockpit voice recorder was housed above that panel. "Big Brother's listening."

"Then I probably shouldn't mention the ganja, mon."

He grinned, but Meghan frowned. "Not funny, partner. CascadeAir doesn't even allow joking about that."

"I know," he said soothingly. It had been a joke, and they both knew it. In the past six or seven years, a corporate policy of zero tolerance for alcohol and drug use had turned into a siege mentality. Substance-abuse posters were mandatory in all crew lounges, and pamphlets offering help and counseling seemed to arrive in employees' mail almost monthly.

Annie Colvin came back with the coffee; it was not in the plastic that passengers got, but a proper china cup. "Here you go," she said and handed it over the high-backed chair. "Decaf all right?"

He noticed that she'd put in milk and had provided a spoon and a saucer to put it on. He winked back at her. "Great, thanks. We're — Hold it."

Annie saw both pilots tilt their heads a fraction of an inch, hearing something over their headsets.

Meghan said, "Roger that, tower."

"Okay, we're rolling," Russ said to Annie. "We'll see you topside."

She said, "Bye," and headed back to her foldout seat in the galley.

Russ stowed the coffee cup and saucer on the recessed panel at his right knee, where it was out of the way. He knew the skipper was a real stickler for protocol, but the softly curved shroud was made of vinyl laminate over thermoformed plastic, all perfectly waterproof. In fact, the surface was intended for food and drinks during flight.

The moon shone down, illuminating the tarmac runway. A dull glow emanated from the south: downtown Portland. The moonlight made Mount Hood a little pink. The Vermeer 111's harsh white lights turned night into day, bled all the color out of the grass to the left and right of the runway.

Meghan queued her jet up to the line, ready to roll. She toggled her microphone. "ATC, this is CascadeAir Eight One Eight, in the blocks and ready to sprint."

The air traffic control voice that came back was surprisingly West Virginian for Oregon. "Ah, roger that, Eight One Eight. Y'all got limitless ceiling tonight and little wind. You are cleared for takeoff on runway two eight lima. Have yourselves a good one."

"CascadeAir Eight One Eight, roger that." Meghan nudged the Vermeer 111 out into the wide runway. "Thanks for the hospitality, Portland. We'll see you next week. Eight One Eight out."

They began to pick up speed. Meghan glanced over just as Russ glanced at her. They winked at each other; kids with big, multimillion-dollar toys. Russ said, "Power's set."

"All right, then. Read 'em off."

"Seventy-five knots," Russ chanted. "One hundred ... one twenty."

"Vee one," the captain said. V-codes represent aircraft speed, and V1 is the decision speed. Hit that speed and you're committed to taking off.

Which they did. Smoothly.

Russ said, "Positive climb."

"Okay, gear up."

He hit the landing-gear handle. They could hear the mechanism clamor beneath them. Both waited to hit a layer of turbulent air, as so often happens, and Russ casually put a hand over the coffee cup that Annie had brought him. When it happened that evening, it was as soft as the gentlest breeze. They doubted any of the passengers felt it.

"LNAV on auto?" Meghan said.

"Got it." The copilot put the lateral navigation controls on autopilot. "You've got good climb thrust."

Meghan waited for a moment, watching the lights of the city spread out beneath her. "VNAV."

Russ put the vertical navigation system on autopilot. "Gotcha."

"Good. Flaps go to one, gear handle off," she said, and they began chanting the after-takeoff checklist. For every term she used, Russ repeated it back at her, like a call-and-response sermon. Landing gear up and off. Flaps up. Checked up. Altimeter okay. Center autopilot on.

Meghan gently turned the sleek, massive aircraft, bringing it into a southerly direction. Russ reached for his coffee cup.

"Like a baby's butt," he said.

Meghan allowed herself a proud smile. "Damn straight."

Flight 818 found its course and began picking up speed. It was still climbing to cruise altitude as it passed over a rest area off Interstate 5.

* * *

With the press of a knuckle buster — shift, option, apple, and the letter X — the handmade computer on the hood of the Outback emitted a silly, cartoonish sound. Dennis Silverman had chosen the noise because he thought it was funny. He smiled at the noise now, almost drowned out by the sound from the airliner passing overhead. He smiled down at the squirrels.

Dennis logged off the computer, closed the cover, disconnected the emitter and tripod. He was careful not to step on the twitching forms of the poisoned squirrels as he hopped down off the hood.

He did so love to play with poisons.


RUSS KAZMANSKI SAID, "HMM. What's that?" He tapped the screen of the Gamelan flight-data-recorder monitor.

Meghan Danvers said, "What's what?"

"I've got a — Whoa!"

The cockpit began shaking madly.

"Shit!" Meghan barked, the avionics monitors dancing so badly in front of her eyes that she couldn't get a read on them. "Trimming rudder to the left! What've we got?"

"I — Dammit!" The bucking grew worse. Above their heads, four electronic caution tones sounded, followed by a siren.

"What've we got!" she barked.

"I dunno! Wait, check the — This doesn't make sense!"

The tones chimed again. The siren was going nonstop.

"Call it in!"

Russ toggled his transceiver. "Uh, PDX flight control, this is CascadeAir Eight One Eight! Mayday! We are declaring an emergency!"


Excerpted from Crashers by Dana Haynes. Copyright © 2010 Dana Haynes. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Crashers 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 84 reviews.
TWTaz More than 1 year ago
I could not put this book down! Was it the best book I ever read? No, but it was certainly one of the most suspenseful and thrilling, and I spent the entire day with my nose pressed to the pages. I found it so interesting to read about the details that go into an investigation of an airplane crash. The author accomplished this without boring me to death with technical details. I enjoyed all of the characters and thought the villains were great without being over the top. It's hard for me to pick a favorite character, because they were all great. The ending got a little too far out there for me, but I enjoyed this book so much that I can easily overlook any "unbelievable" events. If you're looking for a fast-paced, suspenseful read with great characters, you will NOT be disappointed with this book. I really hope that the author writes additional books about the further adventures of this cast of characters!
Scott Morrison More than 1 year ago
One of the better thrillers I have read in a long time. The characters were so well developed that I was dissapointed there were no previous books featuring them. The book had layers of storylines as well. It kept you hooked from beginning to end.
CBH More than 1 year ago
WOW! What an airplane and roller coaster ride, both at the same time. Dana Haynes has written a terrific story by telling the reader about the crash of a large airliner and how the many people that form the group called "Crashers" gather from all over the United States to investigate thoroughly such a crash. At first this was not thought of as a terrorist act so the group does its thing as they do for a normal crash complete investigation (if any airplane crash could be normal). You as the reader are in every part of this trip from finding each specialist in their field of airplanes to the gathering of every piece of evidence regarding the plane, the crew, the manufacturers, and the passengers. Some may be out of the country but they are summoned quickly as every minute is so important in any crash investigation. You also are with the terrorists as you learn how they brought this plane down and their plans for more crashes for reasons you learn later in the book. Dennis Silverman is one of the key people in the investigation since the corporation that he works for manufactured the new and most modern "black box" carried in this flight. The crash itself occurred in Oregon. You start as you are flying and piloting the airliner on an approach to land when all goes wrong. Believe me when I say you will feel as though you are in the crew's seats. There were a few survivors but they were no help giving any information to assist the investigation. When the torn apart airplane body started to cool down, the "Crashers" entered the plane and, once again the descriptions make you feel like you could be inside trying to find body parts and plane parts and getting nauseous from particles of humans, blood, and bones as they are found. Dr. Leonard 'Tommy' Tomzak had retired from the Crashers but he was the closest to the crash site and felt it was his duty to assist, but instead became the leader of the entire investigation. As the many specialists of their field checked in at the site or by other means of communication, Tommy took over and instructed all what and where to do their thing. All the local and state police and fire departments were on site to assist as much as they could. Arrangements were made for a huge new UPS facility nearby to serve as the reconstruction area for the plane parts. First words or photographs noted every painful detail; then huge trucks and lifting equipment were found to lift and move the scattered airplane parts. A second airplane that was exactly the same as the crashed one was brought in and placed in the same huge hanger for comparison and detailed re-assembly. Many investigators were assembled from more fields than most of us have heard of. They worked together so well that all felt Tommy was doing a great job even though he had retired-HAD the meaningful word! I will not go into all the names involved but you can easily identify them as you read. The author has done a great writing job that keeps the reader in the story without confusing them. When the chance of a second crash is brought to the teams' attention, things moved even faster. This had to be prevented and the reason for the first crash had to be discovered even faster. Dana Haynes, please give us some more of your writing in this style. We need more authors to write as you wrote "Crashers" that will teach a highly important function of a group such as the Crashers while entertaining us and leaving us into your book
Katy-King More than 1 year ago
This thriller by hot-as-hell author Dana Haynes will knock you back in your chair until you've finished the last, explosive page!
TheCrowdedLeaf More than 1 year ago
A good thriller is one that keeps you anticipating the outcome up until the very last page; it's one where you don't know who will live or die, and who the bad guy is until the author tells you. Dana Haynes' first thriller is one of the good ones. The only problem I have with it is that I'm done reading. Crashers is about a group of investigators with the NTSB who are in charge of discovering why a plane has crashed every time one goes down. Fresh from quitting the group after an eighteen month investigation failed to find a solution, Tommy Tomzak is thrust into the lead when he's the first person with experience to make it to a devastating plane crash in Oregon. Fearing this new crash will turn into another unsolvable mystery, Tommy is reluctant to take the lead. Things get worse for him when clues start to pop up that this plane crash may not have been an accident. Crashers is the great kind of thriller where we read from both sides of the coin; we know the plane was taken down by a geek with a laser and a laptop, but we don't know who helped him or what his endgame is. We bite our nails as Tommy and the NTSB "crashers" try to investigate the cause of the crash, waiting for them to see what we see, to discover the bits and pieces we know. This is not to say Crashers doesn't leave anything to mystery, because it certainly does; Haynes' gives us just enough to keep us craving more. A great page-turner, an intense edge-of-your-seat thriller, that is Crashers. Haynes' writing is so visual I could see everything in my mind. The best part is that I just read he's working on a sequel!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Debated on even buying this book, now I am glad I did. I never reached a point where I was bored, or lost interest. Hopefully there will be more by this Author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This author did not do her homework. A good story but her facts regarding Air Traffic Control (ATC) procedures, rules and phraseologies are 100% wrong and have no connection to reality. She doesn't know that passenger aircraft must have an IFR clearance from ATC which includes route and altitude assignment and are controlled by En Route Air Traffic Control Centers of which there are 21 Centers in the U.S. and not controlled by local Control Towers except for airport operations. In the case of this novel, that would have been Seattle, Oakland and Los Angeles Centers on the West Coast and New York in the east. Also, planes don't fly through clouds and rain without an Instrument (IFR) Clearance as there are other IFR aircraft being under ATC control in those clouds. If this part of the story was so unfactual, I have to wonder about facts and procedures mentioned for other goverment agencies. And, last but not least, Ford Motor Company does not make an F110 pickup--- how about an F150? I hope this lady will some time to do research for her next novel.
Jet_Mech More than 1 year ago
Even though I work on planes all day, and had to remember that this was fiction a few times, I still really enjoyed this one. Good character development, and a good story line (there is fiction!)
Mort More than 1 year ago
great book. read it in two days. i will keep this author on my must read list. can not go wrong with this book. hope the second one is as good.
Wingman More than 1 year ago
Excellent book. It starts out with action from page one and ends just the same. You need to keep reading to find out what happens next. The characters are believable and the plot is believable. The ending after solving the the crash mystery could have been better, but still a great first book, look forward to the next one and hope that the characters in this book return.
Anonymous 9 hours ago
Loved it! Highly recommended by Rita Paige Turner!
kraaivrouw on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Totally entertaining in an action movie kind of way, Crashers takes as its storyline the world of the NTSB teams that investigate airplane crashes. I've always been fascinated with this kind of investigation - all the experts gathering together to perform a post-mortem on the event to the most minute of details in hopes of preventing future crashes. The only other book that I've read with this as its subject matter is my favorite of Kathy Reichs' books, Fatal Voyage so I was very excited to read this one and it did not disappoint.After the crash of an airline in a remote grassy field in Oregon, the NTSB gathers its crew of experts to find out what happened. The core team includes a pathologist, a "mad bomber," a "sonar witch," a pilot, several engineers, and a 16-year-old girl who is also a computer whiz (and who ultimately shows the whole team the truth of what's happened). The characters feel plausible as do their interactions. There's plenty of media wrangling and politics and fighting with corporate interests along with good old-fashioned terrorist fun as the team is joined by the FBI on behalf of an asset, an ex-Israeli agent who embeds herself into the group of terrorists.This is a fast-paced, competent thriller that looks to be the start of a new series with a new spin on the genre. Fun, readable, and page-turning.
emlzcole on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not a book for those squeamish about flying (like me) but a good mystery nonetheless.
dianaleez on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Passenger Flight 818 takes off from the Portland airport and crashes. Mechanical failure? Pilot error? Or sabotage? NTSB investigators rush to the site to determine the cause of the crash, but the quickly entranced reader of Dana Haynes¿ Crashers already knows the answer.Haynes presents his fast paced story from two angles: the surprisingly enthralling investigation of the NTSB and an FBI investigation in California of Irish terrorists/thugs. And of course the knowing reader rightly expects the two story lines to converge.Successful contemporary thrillers are by definition fast-paced and surely plotted; Haynes¿ offering is both. But, and for me this was also a major strong point, his novel is also peopled by interesting and well defined characters.My major criticism is that the final quarter of the book comes close to exceeding this reader¿s limits for suspension of disbelief. However, I will admit that I was up at 2 AM finishing it.The bottom line: four and a half stars. A fast and riveting read weakened by an action movie finish.
lissarbry on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Crashers is a fictionalized novel that follows an NTSB team after a plane has crashed. The goal of the NTSB is to figure out how and why a plane crashes and then make recommendations so that the same error does not occur again. I don't think the NTSB ever planned on being so deep in a conspiracy when they first reached the crash site!!I think the author did a great job intertwining the NTSB team and their process of researching the crash with the terrorists plot to take down another plane. The only complaint I had about the book was the author's insistence on overdescribing the clothes and hairstyles of the characters. I don't feel like this was necessary to pull in the reader and will turn off many male readers. The book has many twists and turns, some you will see coming-some you will not! I would definitely recommend the book to any mystery fan. The plot is different from many terrorist books out today and will not leave the reader disappointed. I don't recommend, however, taking the book to read on a plane trip! LOL
icedtea on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A fast-paced airplane CSI thriller, I liked it. My quibble would be with the writing at times ¿ show, don¿t tell, in particular with the characters¿ ethnicities. I could see this working as a movie or tv adaptation. An enjoyable summer read.
anysia on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I really like this book (in fact I read it in one sitting which wreaked havoc with my work day). The only other book that I've read that was similar is Airframe by Michael Crichton and Crashers definitely has better pacing. From looking at what other people are saying, I suspect that one of the reasons I was able to like the book is that I really have no technical background in planes or computer programming so it was easy to suspend my disbelief. I may be adding to this review when my partner, who is a pilot, gets through reading it.
kanata on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A rip-roaring thriller with a few weak spots (mainly around technical computer details). An excellent first novel with characters that are unique (I haven't heard of airline crash investigators being the leads in thrillers before and these ones are good) tho they fall a little flat in some spots. The last chapters of the book rush by and are a little crammed together but otherwise I enjoyed it a lot.
Myckyee on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book unfolded just the way I like a thriller to do. It had the set up of characters (which I thought at first were too many to keep track of, but in the end that turned out not to be the case) and the plot and then other elements were introduced. The writing could be a bit more polished, but the story and action kept me interested.One minor thing that should (hopefully) be corrected in the final version (as the book I read was an ARC) is a consistency/logic issue. On page 159 and 160 two characters are in a hotel restaurant speaking and "then Kiki ran upstairs to shower." The other character then moves to another table and begins speaking to someone else. A bit into the conversation and a reference is made to the character who left: "He glanced back the way Tommy had come; where Kiki still sat and finished her juice." Must be magic - maybe something in the juice? Still I liked this book.
Scaryguy on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was interrupted frequently while reading this book. While it should have taken me a few days, it ended up taking just over a week to finish. That said, I was able to get back into the story easy enough each pick-up.Haynes's writing style is enjoyable and descriptive and never floated into purple prose or metaphor/simile swamps. The story itself was engaging until ...**Spoiler alert**As I was reading, enrapt in the story, it progressed to a moment when Daria (former Mossad killer agent) does something completely out of character as a trained assassin: she nonchalantly tries to get away from her captives, even turning her back on them as she scoots by. My heart just plummeted at that unbelievably rookie action, making it harder to get back into the story because the "I'm disappointed in the writer" alarms were blaring in my head. (Of course, Daria gets beaned and is taken "even more" prisoner.)Another part that stretched my imagination past what I could accept was the Crashers 'crash' landing on a highway, then turning around and taking off again. I don't know of any pilot who would trust a plane that had just been 'downed' to take off again without a proper check-through -- on second thought, forget a check-through, who in the world would turn a passenger plane around on the highway and take off again ... Period!I rushed through the ending, just wanting to review it and move on. Those two gremlins toward the end of the book really evaporated my reading pleasure.
sgtbigg on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Crashers by Dana Hayes is two stories in one. The first revolves around the NTSB investigation of a plane crash in rural Oregon. The investigation initially points at pilot error as the cause of the crash, but is it really? The second involves an Irish Protestant terrorist group in California, with a female former Mossad agent thrown in. Naturally, both of these stories eventually intersect. Written with as much action as an episode of ¿24¿ the book was fast-paced and hard to put down. I found the descriptions of the NTSB investigation fascinating although I do not know how much of a resemblance they bare to reality. While I thoroughly enjoyed Crashers it was not perfect. Haynes used one of the recurring plot devices from ¿24¿ that has become tiresome on the show and which I could have done without here. A couple of scenes towards the end of the book were over the top and read more like a script for a summer block buster, which may well be the intention. Lastly, the story centered on the terrorists did not pack the same punch as the plane crash and investigation parts of the book did. In spite of these relatively minor issues and the fact my favorite character was killed, I thoroughly enjoyed the book. Haynes is apparently working on the sequel, which I will be sure to read. I would recommend against reading this book if you are planning on flying anytime soon, there is a big difference between knowing intellectually what can go wrong with a plane and having it spelled out for you. I received this book as an Advanced Reader¿ Edition from Minotaur Books.
jrr731 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A great book, this one had me up all night. It was great to get an understanding of how the NTSB crash teams work. Dana Haynes is on my list for authors to watch.
TheCrowdedLeaf on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A good thriller is one that keeps you anticipating the outcome up until the very last page; it¿s one where you don¿t know who will live or die, and who the bad guy is until the author tells you. Dana Haynes¿ first thriller is one of the good ones. The only problem I have with it is that I¿m done reading.Crashers is about a group of investigators with the NTSB who are in charge of discovering why a plane has crashed every time one goes down. Fresh from quitting the group after an eighteen month investigation failed to find a solution, Tommy Tomzak is thrust into the lead when he¿s the first person with experience to make it to a devastating plane crash in Oregon. Fearing this new crash will turn into another unsolvable mystery, Tommy is reluctant to take the lead. Things get worse for him when clues start to pop up that this plane crash may not have been an accident.Crashers is the great kind of thriller where we read from both sides of the coin; we know the plane was taken down by a geek with a laser and a laptop, but we don¿t know who helped him or what his endgame is. We bite our nails as Tommy and the NTSB ¿crashers¿ try to investigate the cause of the crash, waiting for them to see what we see, to discover the bits and pieces we know. This is not to say Crashers doesn¿t leave anything to mystery, because it certainly does; Haynes¿ gives us just enough to keep us craving more.A great page-turner, an intense edge-of-your-seat thriller, that is Crashers. Haynes¿ writing is so visual I could see everything in my mind. The best part is that I just read he¿s working on a sequel!
wcath on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Crashers met all of my criteria for a thriller. I particularly liked the fact that it gave you the feeling that you were getting "behind the scenes" knowledge of an airplane crash investigation. The plot was well written with no obvious gaps or lags in the book's forward motion. Even so, there was plenty of background material on the characters and they seemed well-rounded enough for a page-turner. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it. I think it would make an especially good beach book or a rainy day escape.
WillowOne on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is about a go-team from the NTSB, the FBI, a former Israeli agent turned FBI informant, an Irish terrorist group and an engineer from a flight data recorder company. When an airliner crashes and the trail leads to the possibility of another airliner being brought down all player are involved.I liked the pace of this book. It was definitely a page turner. I didn't want to put the book down and ended up finishing it in 14 hours, all 343 pages. The author wrote the book from the different views of the characters which kept the story moving and at an exciting level. You always knew what was happening from each perspective and it never let me down. I would call this author's first book, a home run. I can't wait to see what he does in the future.