My wife, sleepy-eyed, poked her head around the corner and peeked into the TV room. “What are you doing up so early?” she asked me. Without waiting for an answer she continued. “I didn’t even hear the TV. What’s new?”
“Terrorists have taken over an Air Traffic Control facility near Boston. There’re part of a plot to shoot down Air Force One with a Stinger missile.”
“WHAT!?” She was suddenly fully awake. “Right now?” She strode into the room and looked at the TV. It wasn’t on. She stared at me.
Sheepishly, I held up my Nook.
“Oh, you’re reading.”
“Yeah. I couldn’t wait to finish this novel, Final Vector by one of my fellow International Thriller Writers.”
“It must be good.”
“That’s an understatement. The last half of it is absolutely ‘unputdownable.’ The hero, Nick, an air traffic controller, is trapped by heavily armed bad guys in the Boston Consolidated TRACON. He’s the only one who can save the president, but I don’t know how he’s gonna do it and stay alive.”
“I guess I’d better let you finish. I’ll make some coffee.”
I nodded my thanks.
Final Vector (Medallion) is by Allan Leverone, like me, a debut noveliest. Al has done a fine job. In fact, Final Vector brought to mind some of Nelson DeMille’s early novels: By the Rivers of Babylon and Cathedral. If you like action-packed thrillers, put Final Vector on your list.
But wait, there’s more–another debut effort that deprived me of sleep recently.
It’s by Thomas Young, who, like me, boasts an Air Force background. He’s also a member of International Thriller Writers.
I couldn’t resist picking up a copy of his novel, The Mullah’s Storm (Putnam). After all, the book’s cover has a picture of a C-130 wrapped in a snowstorm. Get the connection? C-130. Storm. Eyewall.
Anyhow, my curiosity was rewarded. The Mullah’s Storm is a great, well-written action-adventure tale. An Air Force navigator fights to survive after his plane is shot down in the Hindu Kush near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. Major Michael Parson battles not only the bone-chilling environment of the high, rugged mountains, but also a band of jihadis trying to kill him, crippling wounds and self doubts.
In truth, I felt almost guilty every night as a snuggled under my electric blanket and read on while Major Parson shivered with cold and fear.
So, Final Vector and The Mullah’s Storm. Say goodbye to Happy Dreamland for a few weeks.