THE BOOKS

 

  "The soul of the spy is somehow the soul of us all."

                                                      --Jacques Barzum--

Mountain

 Of Ashes 

                              The Story

Matt Thanos is devastated when his wife, Emily, dies in a fiery car wreck. But when an irresistible force hurls him down  a wild river into a bizarre labyrinth, his dead wife calls out to him from the blackness. She--or at least her spirit--is alive. 

To save her, he must fight his way out of this endless underground chamber, a world ruled by Vaatu, god of the darkness, and cross a time-shifting desert to a crystal city ruled by Raava, god of light. Between these two worlds lies a mysterious mountain made from the ashes of dead souls. .

Here, the two gods fight for control, a war that has raged for millennium. Since Matt's escape from the labyrinth has disrupted the balance of power, both gods seek to destroy him. The only way to save himself and Emily is to tear the mountain down and destroy their preverted kingdoms.

Van Gogh's Gypsy

                                      The Story

What if a man, obsessed with the legend of a lost Van Gogh masterpiece, missing since WWII, discovers the legend is true, but fatal consequences lie beyond? This is the dilemma facing Eric Chaisson, the hero of my 80,000-word thriller, Van Gogh’s Gypsy.

 

Soon after Eric’s sister sends him an electronic image of a gypsy woman, signed “Vincent,” she is found slashed to death. Eric embarks on a quest to find her killer and recover the painting. He encounters Sara, a mysterious Romani woman who says her great-grandmother posed for Van Gogh. They find the painting, and flee to the south of France pursued by Amerigo Brassa, a deranged billionaire desperate to get it back. He abducts Sara, takes her to his yacht. Eric kills Brassa, sinks the yacht and rescues Sara, 

Dark Forest 

                                    

                                          The Story

CIA headquarters has been attacked. An eighteen-wheeler loaded with radioactive waste has slammed through the gates and exploded, killing hundreds. Langley is in ruins, American Intelligence in chaos. When her boss is killed in the blast, CIA officer, JESSICA GREEN, jumps into the investigation.

 

She uncovers a startling fact: A deep-cover agent named TOM HATCHER knew the attack was coming. Problem: He deserted the Agency in Afghanistan and took his hunter-killer team, code-named DARK FOREST, with him.

 

There’s a million-dollar bounty on his head. Green tracks Hatcher to Pakistan, finally convinces him to join forces. The man responsible for the Langley bombing, Hatcher says, is a Saudi billionaire called MALIK. The attack on CIA is only phase one of Malik’s plan to plunge the world into global war. Malik’s trail leads Hatcher to the other side of the world, a game reserve outside Vladivostok, Russia—ten miles from the North Korean border.

 

Hatcher and his Dark Thirty team move into position. Hatcher will operate under non-official cover at the World Tiger Foundation, a group dedicated to preserving the last wild habitat of the Siberian tiger.

 

 The head of the organization, KRIS LAWRENCE, wants no part of Hatcher. His spy games will only serve to disturb her endangered tigers. Still, there is a spark when they meet. Satellite images have revealed a mysterious missile installation in North Korea, near the Russian border. Hatcher discovers Malik’s camp, less than twenty miles away. What is he up to?

 

CIA analysts are certain North Korea would never launch a nuclear strike against the U.S. It would be virtual suicide. But what would happen, Hatcher wonders, if they were forced to launch their missile? An attack would plunge the world into war. It’s insane, but Hatcher is convinced this is exactly what Malik intends to do, by forcing a terrified North Korean general to throw the switch.Launch day. Malik heads for the missile site in North Korea. Dark Forest has been ambushed, three men shot to death. One half-eaten by a tiger. Hatcher must go alone to stop Malik.

 

Kris tries to stop him. A huge Siberian tiger, which locals call the ‘ghost cat,’ has been spotted in the area. He’s developed a taste for humans. Deep in the forest, Malik ambushes the CIA man and leaves him tied to a tree—tiger bait. The Siberian appears, gliding soundlessly toward Hatcher.It will take ever ounce of Hatcher’s strength, and all his skill, to break free, follow Malik across the North Korean border and stop the launch.

 

Can Hatcher get there in time?

 

Thirteen Mountain

​                                      The Story

 Jim Gadsden, once the CIA's top operator, is now a burnout at 37. Relucantly, he heeds a call back into action and finds himself thrown into a confusing tangle of treachery that leads from the White House to the chaotic inner chambers of the crumbling Kremlin. 

      A top-secret nuclear weapon, a suitcase nuke, has disappeared. Gadsden must not only find and stop the madmen behind the missing weapon, he ,must try to stay alive in the process. He soon comes face-to-face with a renegade faction within Russian Intelligence--and a mysterious person who has made him a personal target.

      Can Gadsden unravel the mystery of the stolen nuke? What deadly secrets lie hidden on the frozen slopes of Thirteen Mountain?

 

    

 

Shadow White as Stone

 

                                        The Story

Private investigator, CHASE MCGUIRE, has a lucrative business in Washington, D.C., catering to a top-secret clientele. An important case is interrupted by a call from his old cop buddy, TOMMY BELMONT, out in Oregon. Someone has murdered Tommy’s 14-year-old daughter, ALYSSA, on a deserted beach in Devil’s Cove. He’s the prime suspect.

 

Chase feels duty-bound to help the man who once saved his life in a D.C. alley. Oregon Bay Sheriff, TRACY WINTERS, is angry and suspicious when the big-time East Coast P.I. shows up in her jurisdiction. She’s certain he knows more about the murder than he’s telling. There are heated arguments, but soon, heat of a different kind rises between them. With careers and lives at stake, it’s a distraction neither of them can afford.

 

Chase tracks down three suspects: Tommy’s part-time girlfriend, her mysterious brother, just back from Ireland toting a suitcase of money, and her father, an old geezer with a penchant for teenage girls. Did he kill Alyssa to cover up some dirty secret? However, Tracy arrests Tommy for the murder of his daughter. But Chase knows Tommy’s no killer. He searches Tommy’s house for clues. In Alyssa’s journal he discovers she is his daughter, the result of a long-ago night of passion with Tommy’s wife.

 

Now, his hunt for her killer is personal–and his guilt level sky-high. Soon, the sleepy little Oregon town is invaded by the FBI, the CIA and a spook from Irish Intelligence, all searching for a fugitive assassin code-named BOWKNIFE. Was he in Devil’s Cove the night of Alyssa’s murder? Chase suspects he’s somehow linked to her death. As Chase hunts for Bowknife, he crosses paths with CELESTE TALANE, the assassin’s wife. She’s searching for her husband. She’ll kill anyone who gets in her way.

 

Chase is first on her list. She stalks him along a rainy street. Opens fire. A near miss. Chase fires back, but she disappears like a ghost into the fog. He tracks her to a neighboring town where she holds Sheriff Winters hostage, offering Tracy’s life in exchange for Bowknife. This is a bargain Chase knows she will never honot--but what choice does he have?

 

The Kingfisher's Call

                                         The Story

 A Rogue CIA agent, Tuck Nyland, has a few short hours to track down and  stop a high-ranking general in the Chinese army hell-bent on the destrucion of America and the West.      

         Engangled in this dangerous game:

 

  •       An aging Chinese beauty, now an American mole who has access to her       country's most dangerous secrets.

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  •       A legendary CIA agent who controls the fate of his former lover.

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  •       A sexy young woman on the assignment of a lifetime who must prove her self to the man she has come to love.

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  •       A master spy who has infiltrated the highest ranks of the U.S. Government.

Assume the Position

                                         The Story

Danny Mcfadden’s in San Bernardino for the funeral of his old radio buddy, Rick Johnson, the last link to his free-wheeling days as a country music DJ. Lylah Johnson, widow of the deceased, makes a surprise appearance. Her ad-libbed eulogy generates a grave-side free-for-all. Later, Danny has more than a few beers with the widow, the long-simmering passion between them boils over.

 

The next day, Danny heads back to Oregon with a black eye, a guilty conscious, and a reawakened lust for Lylah. Danny has finally landed a real job, teaching at Western Oregon University. A regular salary, dental plan. He’s even got a fiancé, Joanie, and is thinking of settling down, leaving behind the wandering, no-strings-attached life of a country DJ.

 

He tries his best to put the San Bernardino episode behind him, explain away the black eye and concentrate on his new job and his wife-to-be. But the sensuous images of Lylah still linger.Under this pressure, Danny falls off the wagon, gets arrested for DUI and finds there’s only one person he can call: Lylah. Much to his surprise, she tells him she is on her way to Oregon, delivering a forty-foot custom-made, metal-flake purple bus, belonging to her sister, the semi-famous country singer, Dusty Lambert: Danny’s ex-wife. Lylah bails him out of jail and talks him into an impromptu road trip to Portland. Lylah’s ten-year-old daughter, Candice, is on board.

 

Lylah is watching the rear-view mirror. Candice is kidnaped at a rest stop and Lylah, in a high-speed pursuit of the kidnapers, blows up the engine in the big purple bus. The kidnapers get away.Danny soon realizes the bus is being used to smuggle drugs up from Southern California. Is Lylah mixed up in the smuggling? He shelves his doubts as the two make mad love in a roadside motel. A transcendent moment. The wild, free life of the past is calling. Danny is torn between Lylah and the safe, straight life he has found as a university teacher.Things soon get out of hand as the cops, the drug dealers, and the shady music promoters behind his ex-wife converge on Danny, looking for the missing drug shipment. And Lylah has disappeared back to Southern California, seeking to regain custody of her daughter.

 

The DEA puts the pressure on Danny to go undercover to help them crack the drug ring. Reluctantly, to save his job, he agrees to cooperate. He will meet his ex-wife at a concert and see what he can learn. Dusty over-doses and Danny is arrested on suspicion of being her connection. His drinking buddy, Chillie, bails him out. A frantic call from Lylah. She is headed back to Oregon, on the run from Johnson’s parents who have custody of the child. Of course, Danny has to help her.

 

  The bus rolls down the driveway. Danny and Lylah leap onto its roof. A high-speed freeway chase is on. Finally, through Danny’s cleverness, Lylah’s courage, and a lawman’s quick draw, the bad guys are captured.

 

But it’s not happy ending time yet. There is still the question of who gets custody of Candice, who seems to have grown quite fond of Danny–and likewise. The custody hearing in San Bernardino is full of surprises. The first day, a DEA officer testifies that it’s all his fault. The second day, Danny and Lylah get married. Then Dusty, still recovering from her bullet wound, delivers a final surprise: Candice’ real father is Danny Mcfadden. The adventure is over–the hard part’s just beginning. Danny finally learns the truth behind his favorite slogan: “Ships are safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for.

Hurricanes & Swan Songs

                                                  The Story

There is  a bar that you know, where nobody knows your name, a place of unlikely happenings, strange tales, strong drinks. Was it Barry's? perhaps Gary's. Harry's, Larry's . . . . Does it really matter? One thing is certain. Enter its doors and you step into another  dimension.

                                             Contributors

Ted Chiles

Max Talley

Chella Courington

Tom Layou

Matthew J. Pallamary

Lisa Lamb

Shelly Lowenkopf

Nicholas Deitch

John Reed

Christine Casey Logsdon

Dennis Russell

Silver Webb

Stephen T. Vessels

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nights on the Point

( By John Reed and Ken White, writing as Roland Blair)

This is the story of three friends, Jack, Nikki and Weston, who set out on the road in a vintage VW bus, and find power and magic they never dreamed of. Gliding alongside is the "Bear," the first of their companions from the "other side."

 

 As the journey continues, the computer-generated world of the future collides with the timeless mythology of a land before language.

 

The journey nearly ends forever in New Orleans with a poker game and an arrest for murder. Nikki disappears.

 

Reunited on a stolen sailboat, the players embark on final cruise down past Mile Zero to Key West. Hot winds and heartaches, skinheads and shotguns write a final chapter. But is this really the end, or just the beginning of another   journey?