Foreword Review — Sept / Oct 2001
“I walked over to where my father sat at the kitchen table and knelt beside him on the floor. I could see that he was terribly upset, but there was nothing I could do to ease his discomfort. The role I had chosen for myself as advocate to the wilderness of the north took precedence,” rationalized the strong-willed heroine in this romantic audio offering.
Childs introduces Nikki Kingston at age ten, and cleverly creates obstacles in her formative years that manifest in her adult life: the trials of growing up in Northern Canada, in a world populated with male miners and loggers; a mother who encourages her adventurous spirit; and male playmates to whom she strives to prove her physical aptitude. When Nikki is 11, her mother succumbs to a fever and the girl is left in the care of her loving yet overprotective father.
Jarod Blackmore of The Blackmore Mining Company employs Kingston. Morally bankrupt, the “filthy rich son of a noted Englishman,” Jarod notices Nikki becoming a beautiful young woman. Spurning his advances, Nikki comes to see Jarod’s true character, and questions his business practices: “I saw first-hand the injustice his company had done to strip the land of its vital resources.”
Nikki uses strength born of her childhood struggles to grow into a fearless champion conservationist. Against her father’s wishes, she sets out for Falcon’s Peak in an attempt to find evidence of Blackmore’s merciless rape of the earth, intending to present these findings to the Government Conservation Committee. However, she cannot navigate the unstable earth. When news reaches Nikki’s father that there is a cave-in at Falcon’s Peak, he sends for his long-time friend, tracker Kyle Chambers.
Nikki is now trapped in an ancient cave, called “Hollow of My Heart.” Her heart pounds when she hears “a deep voice from within the darkness.” Chambers and Nikki meet and begin a verbal tug-of-war as they try to find a way out of the cave, all the while initiating a muted dance of desire.
Seward’s voice adds an adolescent flavor to the tale, bringing Nikki Kingston to life. Despite the lack of sound effects and a musical score, common in most Aural Releases, novelist and short story writer Childs renders a story fit for family time in Hollow of My Heart.