Landon Beach’s The Wreck comes to life with a brand new audiobook narration done by legendary voice actor Scott Brick.
Set in Michigan, Beach’s novel follows the lives of Nate and Brooke Martin as they head to their summer cabin with hopes of rekindling their stale marriage, only to accidentally happen across a gold coin that is said to be part of a much bigger treasure chest resting at the bottom on Lake Michigan. With the help of an ex-Coast Guard Officer, the couple goes looking for the lost treasure, but as word of Nate’s find quickly spreads among their community—they realize they aren’t the only ones looking for the long lost loot . . .
A wonderfully-written adventure that is perfect for fans of Clive Cussler, Beach’s The Wreck was just released on audiobook with master narrator Scott Brick bringing the story to life, and it’s phenomenal.
Ahead of his anticipated audiobook release, Beach agreed to go back on the record for our Five Questions segment, and I asked him about everything from how he came up with the story idea for this one to how he got Scott Brick on board to narrate it. Check out the full Q&A below, then click here to get your copy of The Wreck, now available paperback, eBook, and audiobook.
TRBS: Before we get into discussing the audiobook specifically, how did you come up with the story idea for this one?
It is great to be back talking with you, Ryan! The Wreck stems from my childhood of summer visits to a town located on the sunrise side of Michigan that is very similar to the fictional town of Hampstead detailed in the book. Beyond my fascination with all things nautical, I admit that I used to don a mask and fins, row my 3-person inflatable boat out about twenty yards offshore, anchor the boat with a gallon milk jug filled with sand attached to around fifteen feet of line bought at the local hardware store, and search for treasure beneath the waves of Lake Huron. As I disappeared beneath the surface, I am certain that every beachgoer—including my parents—gave a quick smirk at my foolhardy exploration and then went back to reading a summer paperback, knowing that the silver and gold that was not there was safe for another few hours.
When I contemplated writing a book inspired by my memories, I came across some interesting facts. For instance, the Great Lakes have more than 6,000 shipwrecks, and, of those, less than a quarter have been found. Then, I read about our greatest maritime mystery and spinning a yarn centered on solving it was too good of an opportunity to pass up.
TRBS: What sort of research did you have to do before actually sitting down to write?
The Wreck was the second novel that I wrote. My first novel—a 400-page experiment gone horribly wrong—was a story that took place mostly on an island in the Atlantic. As I contemplated what I would write next, I thought about home. I have always believed that the Great Lakes region, beautiful and rich with history, would provide the perfect place to set stories. Plus, I have been fascinated with scuba diving and shipwrecks for my entire life, and the Great Lakes have some of the best shipwreck diving in the entire world. The chilly freshwater preserves the wrecks—they still look like ships. And, there is nothing below the waves that could eat you when you dive.
As I started to read material about the Great Lakes for ideas, something interesting happened. One unsolved mystery kept coming up over and over again, and soon I could not get it out of my head. And that is what drove the narrative once I sat down to write. It is simply not possible to list all the references I have read over the years to gain knowledge and ideas for the book, but there are a few that stand out: The 100 Best Great Lakes Shipwrecks, Volume I, by Cris Kohl; Ships of the Great Lakes, by James P. Barry; Shipwrecks of the Great Lakes, by Paul Hancock; Guiding Lights, Tragic Shadows: Tales of Great Lakes Lighthouses, by Edward Butts; Lighthouses of the Great Lakes, by Todd R. Berger; Ghosts of the Great Lakes, by Megan Long; and Louis XIV: A Royal Life, by Olivier Bernier.
I hope the mystery is solved one day—still think about it often—but until then I prefer my version!
TRBS: Now, as for the audiobook, tell me about getting such a great narrator in Scott Brick. How’d that come about, and how excited were you to land him?
Thanks for asking. I cannot say enough positive things about Scott Brick. When I decided to have audiobooks made, my dream was to work with Scott. So, I reached out to him and explained that I had three novels that I would love to have him narrate. He agreed to take a look at The Wreck and determine whether or not he would be interested. I sent him the manuscript and waited. A week later, he e-mailed me back and said we were a go for all three books. I was thrilled! My books have a lot of suspense, and I could not have imagined a more perfect situation; Scott understands the beats of a story and has a keen sense of how to both highlight the crucial pauses and illuminate the reveals. What he has done with The Wreck is remarkable, and I can’t wait for The Real Book Spy’s fans to listen to it—Scott is in top form.
TRBS: What is your favorite audiobook that Scott Brick has done?
It is hard to pick because he has such range (Dune, Jurassic Park, Somewhere in Time, Alexander Hamilton, the John Corey books, Reacher, Cussler, Clancy, Berry, Grisham, and the list goes on). So, I think I will cheat here and talk about the first book I listened to him read.
Long ago, before we had kids, my wife and I were traveling from Florida to Michigan (where I am from) to visit family one summer. We are lifelong readers, but, at that point, had never listened to an audiobook before. We decided to give it a try and purchased David Baldacci’s Simple Genius for the trip. As we entered the congested northbound traffic on I-75, Scott’s voice brought the book to life, and I said, “Who is narrating this?! It’s amazing.” My wife looked at the back of the audiobook package and said… “Scott Brick.” The rest is history.
Like most authors, I do not really like anything that I have written—only see the flaws. However, I will say that The Sail is my sentimental favorite because of the subject matter. About a month ago, Scott sent me the proof recording. Listening to it was an indescribable experience.
TRBS: Lastly, what’s next for you?
The Sail audiobook should be available by mid-May and The Cabin audiobook sometime in June. I did not think it was possible, but Scott is even better in The Sail. I should get to listen to the proof of The Cabin soon. Exciting times, Mr. Steck.
On the writing front, I am almost finished with the first draft of The Hike, which is my most ambitious novel yet and has taken a lot longer to write because of the research.
Thanks for the interview, Ryan, and I hope your fans enjoy The Wreck audiobook and my other books. If your fans are interested in learning more about me and my novels, they can visit landonbeachbooks.com. Specifically, there are radio interviews for each book and a video interview about The Sail located under the ‘In the Media’ tab.
Happy Beach Reading or Brick Listening!
Praised as “One of the hardest working, most thoughtful, and fairest reviewers out there” by #1 New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline, Ryan Steck has “quickly established himself as the authority on mysteries and thrillers” (Author A.J. Tata). Steck also works full-time as a freelance editor and pens a monthly thriller column for CrimeReads. For more information, be sure to follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He currently lives in Southwest Michigan with his wife and their six children.