Newly-promoted to Captain, Dan Lenson's first glimpse of his command is of a ship literally high and dry. The USS Savo Island, which carries a classified, never-before-deployed missile defense system, has run aground on an exposed sandbar off Naples. Captain Lenson has to relieve the ship's disgraced skipper and deploy on a secret mission—Operation Stellar Shield—which will take his ship and crew into the dangerous waters bordering the Middle East.
As a climate of war builds between Israel and Iraq, with threats of nuclear and chemical weapons, Dan has to rally Savo Island's demoralized crew, confront a mysterious death on board ship, while learning to operate a complex missile system that has not been battle tested. But when the conflict reaches a climax, Dan is forced to make a decision that may cost hundreds of thousands of innocent lives—or may save them, but at the cost of his ship and his career.
Filled with dramatic sea adventure, authentic weapons and technology, and distinguished by Poyer's deep understanding of duty and the moral choices made in combat, The Cruiser is the fourteenth novel to feature Dan Lenson in military service that carries him throughout the world.
Set in 2003, Poyer's exciting 14th Dan Lenson novel (after 2011's The Towers) shows that he and his series hero have more than kept pace with the technological challenges and changes in the modern U.S. Navy. Capt. Daniel V. Lenson takes command of the Ticonderoga-class cruiser USS Savo Island after the ship's previous captain ran it aground on a sandbar off Naples. Aboard the Savo, which carries the Navy's most advanced weapon systems, Lenson intuits almost immediately that secrets among the crew members threaten the ship's mission. After the Savo arrives on station in the Persian Gulf, things begin to go seriously wrong, making the battles that follow even more dangerous as the ship and crew both distinguish and disgrace themselves while Lenson, despite crippling self-doubts, does his heroic best. The action is so detailed that readers paying close attention could take over the captain's chair and drive the boat themselves.