All posts by Keith Brownlow

A CASUALTY OF WAR

Title: A Casualty of War

Author: Charles Todd

Though the Great War is nearing its end–Armentieres is back in Allied hands, Cambrai has fallen to the Canadians, Turkey is collapsing, and the Germans are on the retreat–the fighting rages on. Like the battered and weary soldiers she tends, Bess Crawford yearns for an end to the bloodshed taking a devastating toll on everyone, including her fellow doctors and nurses.

Waiting for her transport north, Bess meets Captain Alan Travis, and Englishman whose branch of the family made its fortune on the Caribbean island of Barbados. Their brief, pleasant conversation is a respite from the carnage ahead as they return to duty.

Then, at the beginning of November, Bess unexpectedly encounters Captain Travis again. Brought into her forward aid station bloodied and disoriented from a head wound, the Captain insists that the man who shot him was an English officer–a distant cousin named James Travis–and asks for Bess’s help finding him. Bess’s inquires about Lieutenant Travis turn up nothing, forcing her to believe that a concussion must have clouded the wounded man’s mind.

Days later, fate brings her and the Captain together a third time when he is severely wounded. Again Captain Travis accuses James of shooting him, denouncing him as a killer. But Bess learns that James couldn’t possibly have shot his cousin–which brings Alan Travis’s sanity into question. Bess has seen the impact of war on too many exhausted men whose grasp of reality slipped into nightmare. The hospital is dealing with an angry, tormented patient. Yet Bess remembers an able, clearheaded officer.

As the war comes to a bloody end, Bess is given leave, and in an English clinic for brain injuries, she discovers a suicidal Captain Travis strapped to his bed. Horrified by his condition, she and Sergeant Major Simon Brandon travel to James Travis’s home in Suffolk to learn more about the baffling relationship between these two cousins. Her search for the truth about Alan Travis will lead this smart, capable, and compassionate young women into unexpected danger, and bring her face-to-face with the visible and invisible wounds of war that not even the much-longed-for peace can heal.

TELL TALES

Title: Tell Tale

Author: Jeffrey Archer

Nearly a decade after his last volume of short stories was published, Jeffrey Archer returns with his eagerly awaited brand new collection, Tell Tale, giving us a fascinating, exciting, and sometimes poignant insight into the people he has met, the stories he has come across, and th countries he has visited during the past ten years.

Find out what happens to the hapless young detective from Naples who travels to an Italian hillside town to find out “Who killed the Mayor?, and the pretentious schoolboy in “The Road to Damascus,” whose discovery of the origins of his father’s wealth changes his life in the most profound way.

Revel in the stories of the 1930’s woman who dares to challenge the m3en at her Ivy League University in “A Gentleman and a Scholar” while another young woman who thumbs a lift gets more than she bargained for in “A Wasted Hour.”

These wonderfully engaging and always refreshingly original tales prove not only why Archer has been compared by the critics to Dahl and Mangham, but also why he was described by The Times as probably the greatest storyteller of our age.

CRAZY LIKE A FOX

Title: Crazy Like A Fox

Author: Rita Mae Brown\

In this thrilling new fox-hunting mystery from New York Times best selling author Rita Mae Brown, an investigation into a missing and valuable object flushes out murder, ghosts, and family rivalries. Now “Sister” Jane Arnold and a pack of four legged friends must catch the scent of a killer and unearth a long-buried truth.

As the calendar turns, the crisp October wind bode well for this year’s hunting season. But before the bugle sounds, Sister Jane takes a scenic drive up the Blue Ridge Mountains for a board meeting at the Museum of Hounds and Hunting. Brimming with colorful stories and mementos from hunts of yore, the mansion is plunged into mystery when a venerable hunting horn is stolen right out of its case. The only clue, on a left-behind cell phone, is what seems to be a “selfie” video of the hour’s original owner, Wesley Carruthers–deceased since 1954.

Odder still, Wesley’s body was never found. When Sister makes a discovery that may explain his unsolved disappearance, it leads her back to the Jefferson Hunt at midcentury, with her faithful hounds at her side. But as the clues quickly mount, Sister is no longer sure if she’s pursuing a priceless artifact, a thief, Wesley’s killer….or a ghost. The only certainty is that someone wants to put Sister off the chase–perhaps permanently.

Teeming with familiar and beloved characters, intrigue, and the rich local history of Virginia’s horse country, Crazy Like a Fox races toward its stunning conclusion in full cry and packed with plenty of surprises. Once again, Rita Mae Brown dazzles and delight in her irresistible style with a novel readers are certain to be crazy about.

ANDREW JACKSON AND THE MIRACLE OF NEW ORLEANS

Title: Andrew Jackson and the Battle of New Orleans

Author: Brian Kilmeade and Don Yeger

The War of 1812 saw America threatened on every side. Encouraged by the British, Indian tribes attacked settlers in the West, while the Royal Navy terrorized the coasts. By mid-1814, President James Madison’s generals had lost control of he war in the North,, losing battles in Canada. Then British troops set the White House ablaze, and a feeling of hopelessness spread across the country.

Into this dire situation stepped Major General Andrew Jackson. A native of Tennessee who had witnessed the horrors of the Revolutionary War and Indian attacks, he was glad America had finally decided to confront repeated British aggression. But he feared that President Madison’s men were overlooking the most important target of all: New Orleans.

If the British conquered New Orleans, they would control the mouth of the Mississippi River, cutting Americans off from that essential trade route and threatening the previous decade’s Louisiana Purchase. The new Nation’s dreams of western expansion would be crushed before they really got off the ground.

So Jackson faced three enormous challenges. He had to convince President Madison and his War Department to take him seriously, even though he wasn’t one of the well-educated Virginians and New Englanders who dominated the government. He had to assemble a coalition of frontier militiamen, French-speaking Louisianans, Cherokee and Choctaw Indians, freed slaves, and even some pirates. And he had to defeat the most powerful military force in the world–in the confusing terrain of the Louisiana bayous.

in short, then Jackson needed a miracle. The local Ursuline nuns set to work praying for his outnumbered troops. And so the Americans, driven by patriotism and protected by prayer, began he battle that would shape our young nation’s destiny.

As they did in their two previous bestsellers, kilmeade and Yaeger make history come alive with a riveting true story that will keep you turning the pages. You’ll finish with a new understanding of one of America’s greatest generals–who later became one of you most controversial presidents. And you’ll have a renewed appreciation for the brave men who fought so that America could one day stretch “from sea to shining sea.”

SCALIA SPEAKS – REFLECTIONS ON LAW, FAITH, AND LIRE WELL LIVED

Title: Scalia Speaks – Reflections on Law, Faith, and Life Well Lived

Author: Antonin Scalia

By any measure, Antonia Scalia lived an extraordinary life. A Supreme Court Justice for three decades, he transformed the way that judges and lawyers think about the law. Married to his beloved wife, Maureen, for more than fifty-years, a father to nine children, and a grandfather to dozens, he was devoted to his family and his faith. He was gregarious, energetic, and a friend to people of all political stripes.

Over his career, Justice Scalia delivered hundreds of speeches across the country and throughout the world. Scalia Speaks collects for the first time his best speeches, covering topics as varied as the law, faith, virtue, pastimes, and his heroes and friends. Featuring a foreword by longtime friend Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and an intimate introduction by his youngest son, this volume includes dozens of speeches, some deeply personal, and nearly all of which have never been published before.

Americans have long been inspired by Justice Scalia’s ideas, delighted by his wit, and instructed by his intelligence. Scalia Speaks enables readers to encounter the man in full–to understand the legal insights that made him one of the most important justices in the Court’s history and to learn from his broader insights into a life well lived.

This timeless book is perfect for any reader interested in a man and mind that helped shape our nation.

THE ODYSSEY OF ECHO COMPANY

Title: The Odyssey of Echo Company

Author: Doug Stanton

On a single night, January 31, 1968, as many as 100,000 soldiers in the North Vietnamese Army attack thirty-six cities throughout South Vietnam, hoping to dislodge American forces. forty-six young American soldiers of an Army reconnaissance platoon (Echo Company, 1/501) of the 101st Airborne Division hailing from farms, small towns, and big cities, are thrust into savage combat having been in-country only a few weeks. Their battles against North Vietnamese soldiers and toughened Viet Cong guerrillas are relentless, often hand to hand, and waged ac ross landing zones, rice paddies hamlets, rivers and dense jungle. Their exhausting day-to-day existence, which involves ambushes, grueling machine-gun battles, and heroic rescues of wounded comrades, forges the group into a lifelong brotherhood, The Odyssey of Echo Company is about these young men and centers on the searing experiences of one of them, Stanley Parker, who is wounded three times during the fighting.

When the young men came home, some encounter a country that doesn’t understand what they have survived. Many fall silent, knowing that few want to hear the stories they have lived to tell–until now. Based on interviews, personal letters, and Army after-action reports, and augmented by maps and combat zone photos, The Odyssey of Echo Company recounts the wartime service and incoming of ordinary young American men in an extraordinary time and confirms Doug Stanton’s prominence as an unparalleled storyteller of our age.

THOMAS JEFFERSON AND THE TRIPOLI PIRATES

Title: Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates

Author: Brian Kilmeade

This is the little-known story of how a newly independent nation was challenged by four Muslim powers and what happened when America’s third president decided to stand up to intimidation.

When Thomas Jefferson became president in 1801, America faced a crisis. The new nation was deeply in debt and needed its economy to grow quickly, but its merchant ships were under attack. Pirates from North Africa’s Barbary coast routinely captured American sailors and held them as slaves, demanding ransom and tribute payments far beyond what the new country could afford.

Over the previous fifteen years, as a diplomat and then as secretary of state, Jefferson had tried to work with the Barbary states (Tripoli, Tunis, Algiers, and Morocco). Unfortunately, he found in impossible to negotiate with people who believed their religion justified the plunder and enslavement of non-Muslims. These rogue states would show no mercy–at least not while easy money could be made by extorting the Western powers. So President Jefferson decided to move beyond diplomacy. He sent the U.S Navy’s new warships and a detachment of Marines to blockade Tripoli–launching the Barbary Wars and beginning America’s journey toward future superpower status.

As they did in their previous bestseller, George Washington’s Secret Six, Kilmeade and Yaeger have transformed a nearly forgotten slice of history into a dramatic story that will keep you turning the pages to find our what happens next. Among the many suspenseful episodes: 1. Lieutenant Andrew Sterett’s ferocious cannon battle on the high seas against the treacherous pirate ship Tripoli. 2. Lieutenant Stephen Decatur’s daring night raid of an enemy harbor, with the aim of destroying an American ship that had fallen into the pirates’ hands. 3. General William Eaton’s unprecedented five-hundred-mile land march from Egypt to the port of Derne, where the Marines launched a surprise attack and an American flag was raised in victory on foreign soil for the first time.

few today remember these men and other heroes who inspired the Marine Corps hymn “From the Halls of Montezuma to the Shores of Tripoli, we fight our country’s battles in the air and, on land and sea.” Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates recaptures this forgotten war that changed American history with a real-life drama of intrigue, bravery, and battle on the high seas.

SOME KIND OF HERO

Title: Some kind of Hero

Author: Suzanne Rrockmann

Suzanne Brockmann’s signature mix of high-octane action and electrifying passion leaves readers breathless–and eager for more of her ultrasexy operatives. Now the author USA Today hails as “the reigning queen of military suspense” makes an explosive return to her best selling Troubleshooters series.

Navy men don’t come tougher than Lieutenant Peter Green. Every day he whips hotshot SEAL wannabes into elite fighters. So why can’t he handle one fifteen-year-old girl? His ex’s death left him a single dad overnight, and very unprepared. Though he can’t relate to an angsty teen, he can at least keep Maddie safe–until the day she disappears. Though Pete’s lacking in fatherly intuition, his instinct for detecting danger is razor sharp. Maddie’s in trouble. Now he needs the Troubleshooters team at his back, along with an unconventional ally.

Romance writer Shayla Whitman never expected to be drawn into a real-world thriller–or to meet a hero who makes her pulse pound. Action on the page is one thing. Actually living it is another story. Shay’s not as bold as her heroines, but she’s a mother. She sees the panic in her new neighbor’s usually fearless blue eyes–and knows there’s no greater terror for a parent than having a child at risk. It’s an ordeal Shay won’t let Pete face alone. She’s no highly trained operative, but she’s smart, resourceful, and knows what makes teenagers tick.

Still working alongside Pete has its own perils–like letting the heat between them rise out of control, intimate emotions could mean dangerous, even deadly, consequences for their mission. No matter what, they must be on top of their game, and playing for keeps….or else Pete’s daughter may be gone for good.

RED SWAN

Title: Red Swan

Author: P.T. Deutermann

Written with the authority of twenty-six years of military and government service at sea and in Washington, Red Swan is a brilliant, provocative thriller about the contemporary war that no one sees but will shape the future of America and China.

Set in contemporary Washington, D.C., Red Swan begins with an ominous phone call from Carson McGill, the deputy director of operations at the CIA, to retired CIA officer Preston Allender. Henry Wallace is dead. A behind-the-scenes operator at the CIA, Wallace was integral to the Agency’s secret war against China’s national intelligence service, which infiltrates government and military offices, major businesses, and systems crucial to our security. Wallace had severely damaged China’s Washington spy ring with a devastating ruse, a so-called black swan, in which a deep-undercover female agent targeted and destroyed a key Chinese official. Now Wallace’s mysterious death suggest that the CIA itself has been compromised and that China has someone inside the agency.

But as Allender quietly investigates, he makes a shocking discovery that will upend the entire American intelligence apparatus: Wallace’s black swan operation may have been turned against the CIA. A red swan is flying, and the question is: Who is she, what is her target, and where will she land.?

P.T. Deutermann is a master of both World War II naval historical fiction and the modern thriller set in the nexus of the CIA. Red Swan is Deutermann at his best.

DOWN A DARK ROAD

Title: Down A Dark Road

Author: Linda Castillo

Two years ago Joseph King was convicted of murdering his wife and sentenced to life in prison. He was a “fallen” Amish man and a known drug user with a violent temper. Now King has escaped and he’s headed for Painters Mill.

News of a murderer on the loose travels like wildfire, putting Chief of Police Kate Burkholder and her team of officers on edge. This is personal for Kate. She grew up with Joseph King. As a thirteen-year-old Amish girl, she’d worshipped the ground he walked on. She never could have imagined the nightmare scenario that unfolds when King shows up with a gun and takes his five children hostage at their Anish uncle’s farm. Armed and desperate, he has nothing left to lose. Fearing for the safety of the children, Kate makes contact with King only to find herself trapped with a killer. Or is he? All King asks of her is to help him prove his innocence–and he releases her unharmed. Kate is skeptical, but when the facts and the evidence didn’t align, she begins to wonder who she should trust. Spurned by some of her fellow cops she embarks on her own investigation only to unearth an unspeakable secret–and someone who is willing to commit murder to keep it buried.