Mark Nykanen

$16.95 October 2009
ISBN: 978-0-9821756-4-4

Kidnapped by neo-primitive survivalists with a radical environmental agenda, an aging model finds herself fighting for her life in the rugged Pacific Northwest mountains.

Now available in audio book from or wherever fine audio is downloaded.

Our PriceUS$16.95
Save wishlist

Synopsis | Reviews | Excerpt

Primitive captures the raw and rugged alpine environment...a furiously-paced thriller about a mother and daughter, and the radical environmentalists who want to use them to deliver a desperate message to the world." Christopher Van Tilburg, author of Mountain Rescue Doctor

Praise for Mark Nykanen's previous novels:
"Bone Parade goes down easy. Real easy." Entertainment Weekly
"[The creepiest page-turned since The Silence of the Lambs." US Weekly
"Nykanen has the style and the ability to grab the reader by the throat." The Salem Statesman Journal

Sonya Adams steps into a limo at a Montana airport expecting to be driven to her next modeling assignment. Minutes later she realizes the horrifying truth: she's been tricked and kidnapped. Plunged into the world of a neo-primitive survivalist cult in the snow-locked mountains of the Pacific Northwest, Sonya becomes a pawn in their mission to reveal a doomsday environmental secret -- a secret the government and the energy corporations will kill to keep.

Former NBC News Correspondent Mark Nykanen is a four-time Emmy winner and an Edgar-winning documentarian. Now, as the author of acclaimed thrillers including HUSH, SEARCH ANGEL and THE BONE PARADE, he takes readers on a chilling journey into intrigue and terror. Visit the author at


"Primitive is a skillfully written book. There's no getting around it: Mark Nykanen knows how to keep you on the edge of your seat." -- Mal Warwick's Blog On Books

"Mark Nykanen's Primitive a thriller pure and simple– the reader hops into a rocket sled and holds on for dear life, in a nail chewing ride full of action, gut wrenching fear and genuine terror. There's no getting off once you've boarded. So leave yourself some time." -- John Atcheson, Climate

"Mark's book is a real page turner...but with a serious add to the ever growing body of work calling us to wake up to modern threats to our world environment. I really enjoyed talking to Mark, his passion, humor and knowledge made the conversation a real much so that you'll hear half the interview on air...and another half on the website!" -- Sheryl MacKay, the host of Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Radio's "North by Northwest"

"The tension never lets up...Mark Nykanen does a marvelous job at ramping up the frenetic pace without sacrificing plot or character development...Primitive is a powerfully intense story that provokes a wealth of emotions." -- Book Illuminations Blog

"This is a phenomenal story written with skill and insight." -- thriller author Cym Lowell

"Absolutely great. I couldn't put it down. I loved the writing." -- Bill Evans, New York Times bestselling author of Category 7 and other thrillers, and the nationally renowned senior meteorologist for WABC-TV in New York City

"...twists and turns, making the reader wonder who the real villains are. Primitive is an enjoyable and thought twisting read." -- Victoria Kennedy, Midwest Book Review

"This book was awesome...keeps your attention...entertaining...Truly fascinating look at climate change and the radicals on either side of the fence." -- Cherry Stilettos Blog

" exciting gripping thriller that hooks the audience from the onset...a profound cautionary tale." -- The Mystery Gazette Blog

"This book was awesome--it keeps your attention right up to the last page. It makes you think, it's entertaining, the characters are relatable... Truly fascinating look at climate change and the radicals on either side of the fence. Also very frighteningly current. The portrayal of government task forces--especially compared with the latest evidence--is compelling and scary as well. This book may define/propel our zeitgeist." («««««) -- Library Thing

"More frightening than any vision of our future, Mark Nykanen's Primitive depicts the reality of the here and now. A timely and stunning vision of what happens when true-believers clash, catching innocents in the middle." -- Ed Stackler, editor of New York Times-bestselling authors Greg Iles, Ridley Pearson, Ted Dekker, and others.

"It's not just a page-turner, it's a head-turner. It's Dan Brown meets Al Gore. You can't stop reading and once you're done, you can't stop thinking about its messages. A book that bookstore employees will hand-sell to customers and those customers will then insist their friends read." --Dale Dauten, King Features

"Primitive captures the raw and rugged high alpine environment, a powerful, emblematic setting for this furiously-paced thriller about a mother and daughter, and the radical environmentalists who want to use them to deliver a desperate message to the world." --Christopher Van Tilburg, author of Mountain Rescue Doctor



Drowned. Suffocated. Entombed in a tunnel as tight and cold as a casket.

Sonya Adams wondered bleakly what the media would make of her death. Aging Fashion Model Dies in Bizarre Escape Attempt? Body of Middle-aged Woman Dredged from Earth? And would they ever figure out how she—the least likeliest person on the planet—had ended up down here?

The unnerving sound of swiftly-moving water still rose from deep in the earth, though Sonya quickly realized that it could be coming from anywhere; she had little feeling for where the tunnel was taking her. She knew only the harrowing threat that she'd fled.

Air currents swept over her body—damp with fear despite the frigid temperature—and the water grew louder. Closer. She gripped the moist ground, bracing herself for a murderous flood. But for now, it remained only the sound of water. A lot of it. Rushing furiously.

She thrust the candle as far as she could, dragging herself on one elbow until she spotted a wide, fast-flowing surface about twelve feet away. It reflected the flame so brightly that she startled.

An underground river?

But that made no sense. Why hadn't it filled the tunnel and drowned her? The answer came when she tried to crawl a foot closer, and started to fall. The tunnel had been on a gentle tilt that had steepened suddenly.

She screamed and jammed the heels of her hands onto the slick rock, dropping the candle and snuffing it instantly; but still she slid, gaining speed in the blackness, on the verge of freefall. The ground vibrated with the roar of water.

In a final frenzied effort, she reared up on her hands and knees, driving her back into the low ceiling and arresting her slide only inches from the torrent.

She backed up, terrified of slipping even slightly, knowing from her single glimpse that the flow was moving so rapidly that it would need only a hand or limb to claim all of her.

Another step back, and another, feet first, her head pounding with blood's angriest rhythms.

After a frantic, sixty-second retreat that felt more treacherous than a cliff walk, she collapsed to her belly on safer ground, crying and hugging the dirt.

Come on, I got in, she pleaded with herself, I can get out.

But no assurance could inch her back through the tunnel's most torturous passage.

Her stomach boiled with anxiety, a siege of raw, wretched panic that left her twisting violently—brief, brutal movements that bruised and bloodied her, but gained not a hint of freedom.

A peculiar madness had set in—the rigid shackles of earth that had claimed her body were now claiming her mind. Horrid, tumultuous sensations forced themselves upon her until all she could feel was the massive, malevolent pressure trapping her in the cold hard ground. Her eyes offered no salvation, only a blinding loss of light. Open or closed, she knew but a blank universe of compressing darkness, the grotesque horrors of the living grave.

As the madness marginalized the last of her sanity, and her thoughts careened with the wildest fears she'd ever known, the icy dampness seeped into her core and became a cruel, kindred assault. She shivered uncontrollably.

A noise rose near her feet. In the same instant she realized that a sock had slipped off in her struggles, and she felt her foot's naked vulnerability in the empty space behind her.

The sound petrified her. It did not come in kindness. Or in rescue. Not to a mind crazed by the worst the earth could offer. No, to Sonya Adams deep in this dark stranglehold, the predator had come finally to strike.

Please review these other products:

Striking Back

Mark Nykanen

$14.95 May 2011
ISBN: 978-1-61194-016-9

Our Price: US$14.95

click to see more