Deadly Straits by R.E. McDermott
(A Tom Dugan Novel)

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When marine engineer and very part-time spook Tom Dugan becomes collateral damage in the War on Terror, he's not about to take it lying down.

Falsely implicated in a hijacking, he's offered a chance to clear himself by helping the CIA snare their real prey, Dugan's best friend, London ship owner Alex Kairouz. Reluctantly, Dugan agrees to go undercover in Alex's company, despite doubts about his friend's guilt. Once undercover, Dugan's steadfast refusal to accept Alex's guilt puts him at odds not only with his CIA superiors, but also with a beautiful British agent with whom he's romantically involved.

When a tanker is found adrift near Singapore with a dead crew, and another explodes in Panama as Alex lies near death after a suspicious suicide attempt, Dugan is framed for the attacks. Out of options, and convinced the attacks are prelude to an even more devastating assault, Dugan eludes capture to follow his last lead to Russia, only to be shanghaied as an 'advisor' to a Russian Spetsnaz unit on a suicide mission.

Deadly Straits is a non-stop thrill ride, from London streets, to the dry docks of Singapore, to the decks of the tankers that feed the world's thirst for oil, with stops along the way in Panama, Langley, Virginia, and Teheran. Richly spiced with detail from the author's 30 years sailing, building, and repairing ships worldwide, it is, in the words of one reviewer, "fast-paced, multilayered and gripping."


"An awesome book! It has a very Tom Clancy feel. Kudos to Mr. McDermott. Well done, Sir."
D. Bosshardt, Amazon - 5 Stars

"An absolute cracker of a thriller, quite simply on a par with Clancy et al. When I'd finished I wanted more! A terrific story superbly written.
'Tao" Amazon (UK) - 5 Stars

"A little Clancy, a bit of Ludlum, and a lot of Mr. McDermott!"
Libby Dunkin, Amazon - 5 Stars

"Move over WEB Griffin, Cussler, & Ludlum. Weaving together come-alive characters, McDermott takes us through an all too realistic plot involving oil tankers used to cause havoc to the worlds' shipping ... a page turner."
Bob Hopfe, Amazon - 5 Stars

"A brilliant thriller. I was quite surprised that this is a first novel. On par with high ranking thrillers. Action non-stop ...a great read."
Cheryl M-M, Amazon (UK) - 5 Stars

"In 1994 (Debt of Honor), Tom Clancy used a jumbo jet as a weapon ... it happened on 9/11. In 2011 R.E. McDermott published "Deadly Straits" where supertankers are used as terror weapons with deadly results. Let's hope we don't look back and say McDermott predicted that. This is a book of action and suspense, well written with multiple plots woven into one coherent whole. I've read several best-sellers that are legends in the genre and this book is as well done as any of them, if not better."
Stephen C. Lovely, Amazon - 5 Stars

"McDermott consistently gets it right. The captains, mates and engineers sound like captains, mates and engineers ... like visiting old friends. Tom Dugan - a skilled professional a bit rough around the edges - works well as the protagonist. Smart and educated, he also regularly gets grease under his nails, and moves easily between action and insight. A book even a thriller skeptic and ship geek can love. A gripping read - highly recommended."
Rick Spilman, The Old Salt Blog - 5 Stars

"In a book that takes no prisoners, McDermott tells a tale of high seas terrorism and tells it well. Go get this one, right now!"
Nancy, Cheryl's Book Nook - 5 Stars

"In 20 years at sea as mate and captain, I've been through the Panama Canal too many times to count, and through the Bosphorus and Malacca Straits as well. You nailed it. Yours was the first novel to convince me the author had been there too. Well Done."
Captain Dave Fath (via email)

About R.E. McDermott

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A graduate of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, R.E. McDermott spent thirty years in the marine industry, in positions from ship's officer to shipping company management. He's managed ship building projects in the U.S. and Far East, and currently splits his time between the U.S. and Singapore, where he maintains a marine consultancy, advising clients on ship construction, operations, and engineering matters. DEADLY STRAITS is his first novel. Visit him at
Published December 9, 2013 by R.E. McDermott. 415 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction, Political & Social Sciences. Fiction

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